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European Union

European Union

Regional innovation ecosystems - Learning from the EU's cities and regions

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, September 1, 2016
Abstract in English: 
This book is produced by the Members of the European Committee of the Regions in close collaboration with Europe's cities and regions. The book is all about pioneering cities and regions - or reviewing the content of the book from activities perspective: about regional innovation ecosystems. In recent years it has increasingly become apparent that only through sharing knowledge and working in partnership it is possible to create truly competitive and sustainable economies meeting the needs of the 21st century. In order to achieve this, the European Union can and must work with and for our citizens. For this to happen we need to achieve a change in mindset. This publication therefore seeks to stimulate bench-learning between regions and cities, sparking new ideas and fundamentally stirring economic development. Presenting some of the most inspiring projects across the EU, this book offers readers an opportunity to understand and explore how Europe's cities and regions are breaking new ground in regional development. The European Committee of the Regions is the EU's Assembly of 350 regional and local representatives from all 28 Member States, representing over 507 million Europeans. This book is an essential part of the process of implementing our political priorities for 2015-2020 and giving Europe's citizens the fresh start they need. In order to overcome its current challenges, Europe must establish a culture of co-creation and break its boundaries by moving towards entrepreneurial discovery, open innovation, experimentation and action
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Number of pages: 
288
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Electric vehicles in Europe

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, September 26, 2016
Abstract in English: 
This report provides a non-technical summary of the latest information on electric road vehicles in Europe, including those with hybrid technologies. It focuses upon electric passenger vehicles, explaining the different types that are now available on the market, how each type works, and their respective advantages and disadvantages.
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39
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OECD‑FAO Agricultural Outlook 2016‑2025

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The Agricultural Outlook 2016-2025 is a collaborative effort of OECD and FAO. It brings together the commodity, policy and country expertise of both organisations and input from collaborating member countries to provide an assessment of medium-term prospects of national, regional and global agricultural commodity markets. The Outlook provides supply, demand, trade and price estimates of major agricultural commodities for 41 countries and 12 geographical regions. The special theme chapter of this year’s edition focusses on the prospects and challenges of the agricultural sector in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prices for the main crops, livestock and fish products all fell in 2015, signalling that an era of high prices is quite likely over for all sub-sectors. Meat prices fell from record highs in 2014, dairy product prices continued declines that started in 2013 and 2014, while crop prices fell further from their peaks in 2012.The main factors behind lower prices have been several years of robust supply growth, weakening demand growth due to the overall economic slowdown, lower oil prices and further accumulation of already abundant stocks.
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137
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A New Skills Agenda for Europe

Abstract Original Language: 
‘A New Skills Agenda for Europe’ was published on 10 June 2016. Its focus is on equipping Europeans with the right skills in order to increase Europe’s workforce employability and to respond to changes in labour market requirements. The agenda is grounded on the evidence of the existence of skills gap and mismatch across the Union and within countries. There is a shortage of basic, digital, transversal, and entrepreneurial skills. A common understanding of key competences on the job is missing. Vocational education and training (VET) is undervalued and its attractiveness and opportunities may be enhanced. Overall, skills intelligence allowing for more informed choices is indispensable for skills policies to make a difference in addressing the extent of mismatch of supplied competences and the occurrence of gaps. All these aspects are relevant at the territorial level. In fact, the outlining of policies and/or interventions in the domains of education and training as well as of youth, employment and migration is not solely a prerogative of national governments. It also occurs at the local and regional level. Furthermore, it is at this same level that labour market needs meet the skills supply and that future trends of job opportunities as well as cooperative approaches among different stakeholders of the labour market are shaped.
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Abstract in English: 
‘A New Skills Agenda for Europe’ focus on equipping Europeans with the right skills in order to increase Europe’s workforce employability and to respond to changes in labour market requirements. The agenda is grounded on the evidence of the existence of skills gap and mismatch across the Union and within countries. There is a shortage of basic, digital, transversal, and entrepreneurial skills. A common understanding of key competences on the job is missing. Vocational education and training (VET) is undervalued and its attractiveness and opportunities may be enhanced. Overall, skills intelligence allowing for more informed choices is indispensable for skills policies to make a difference in addressing the extent of mismatch of supplied competences and the occurrence of gaps. All these aspects are relevant at the territorial level. In fact, the outlining of policies and/or interventions in the domains of education and training as well as of youth, employment and migration is not solely a prerogative of national governments. It also occurs at the local and regional level. Furthermore, it is at this same level that labour market needs meet the skills supply and that future trends of job opportunities as well as cooperative approaches among different stakeholders of the labour market are shaped.
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Number of pages: 
91
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Public opinion and EU policies - Exploring the expectations gap

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, July 15, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Citizens’ expectations of the European Union vary widely across policy areas. A Eurobarometer survey of the European Parliament – Europeans in 2016: Perceptions and expectations, fight against terrorism and radicalisation – seeks to identify those areas in which EU citizens want to see the Union doing more. Having identified areas in which there is a gap between the EU’s current action and citizens’ expectations of the Union, the next step is to look at the potential – within the constraints of the EU legal foundations – for the EU to do more to meet citizens’ expectations.
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72
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Space security for Europe

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, July 7, 2016
Abstract in English: 
This Report is the outcome of an EUISS Task Force on ‘Space and Security’ which convened from September 2015 until June 2016. It has three main objectives. First, it analyses potential threats to critical European space infrastructure, (including cyber attacks), and evaluates possible responses.

Second, it assesses the main space security considerations for the EU – as a satellite owner, facilitator for European cooperation, and diplomatic actor. Third, it offers ideas for improving European strategic thinking on space security, with the goals of improving space system resilience, reducing external dependence, and ensuring a secure and sustainable environment for outer space activities.
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102
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A Global Strategy for the European Union’s Foreign And Security Policy

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Abstract in English: 
High Representative Federica Mogherini presented the EU Global Strategy on foreign and security policy to EU leaders meeting in Brussels at the EU summit on 28 June 2016.

Mogherini was mandated to prepare the new strategy by the European Council in June 2015 and invited to present it to leaders in June of this year. The strategy is the result of an open and transparent process: over the past year, extensive consultations took place with the EU Member States, the European institutions (including the European Commission and the European Parliament), and European civil society at large, including think thanks.

The strategy, under the title Shared Vision, Common Action: A Stronger Europe, has been elaborated under the leadership of the High Representative. It reflects the collective views expressed in the process and offers a strategic vision for the EU’s global role. In these challenging times, both for Europe and globally, the strategy highlights common ground and presents a common way forward.
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60
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The impact of demographic change on European regions

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, March 17, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The core long-term structural demographic change in Europe is ageing: the current ratio of working age population to old dependent population below 4 to 1 will, according to Eurostat projections, be replaced by a ratio of 2 to 1 by 2050.
Demographic change in individual Local and Regional Authorities (LRAs) will depend on their capacity to attract the working-age population. However, concentrations of seniors in specific localities and regions do not necessarily constitute a challenge or handicap, insofar as this population’s income from retirement schemes provides the basis for the development of a wide range of economic activities.
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147
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Report of the Group of Personalities on the Preparatory Action for CSDP-related research

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Abstract in English: 
In 2015, the European Commission invited key personalities from European industry, government, the European Parliament and academia to advise it on establishing a Preparatory Action on Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP)-related research.

The primary mission of this Group of Personalities was to help establish recommendations for a long-term vision for EU-funded CSDP-related research which can boost European defence cooperation. These recommendations address the overall scope and governance of future EU-funded CSDP research and highlight possible collaboration and coordination mechanisms. The overarching goal of the Preparatory Action and CSDP-related research is to create a framework that would facilitate a collaborative approach to defence among the member states.

This report is the result of several months of regular conversation and consultation among a group of experts encompassing the ‘sherpas’, officials from the European Commission and the EUISS.
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110
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Circular economy in Europe — Developing the knowledge base

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, January 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The report describes the concept of the circular economy and outlines its key characteristics. It draws attention to both the benefits and challenges in transitioning to such an economy and highlights possible ways to measure progress.

Europe is bound to the rest of the world through multiple systems that enable two-way flows of materials, financial resources, ideas and innovation. As a result, Europe's economic, ecological and societal resilience is and will continue to be significantly affected by a variety of global and interdependent social, economic, political, environmental and technological trends.

Global material resource use in 2030, for example, is expected to be twice that of 2010 (SERI, 2013), while the most recent United Nations forecast suggests that the global population is likely to exceed 11 billion by the end of the 21st century (UN DESA, 2015). With 7.2 billion people today, however, the planet is already struggling to meet humanity's demands for land, food and other natural resources, and to absorb its wastes. Indeed, there is evidence that some planetary boundaries, which define a safe operating space for human development, may already have been transgressed. These include the biosphere's integrity, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles, climate change and land system changes
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42
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