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Foreign affairs

Border Security, Camps, Quotas: The Future of European Refugee Policy?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, June 10, 2016
Abstract in English: 
On 18 March 2016, the EU member states and Turkey concluded an agreement on the return of persons having arrived in Greece irregularly – in the hope of reducing the number of irregular migrants coming into the EU. After months of member states being unable to find a common response to the rising numbers of new arrivals, the agreement is considered a breakthrough by many observers. In fact, the agreement stands for a broader shift in EU refugee policy, which now focuses on the themes of border security, camps and quotas. This goes along with a reorientation from the previously prevalent individual asylum application towards a system where groups of refugees are accepted voluntarily (resettlement). This trend carries serious risks for refugee protection globally. At the same time, however, new forms of cooperation are taking shape that could strengthen the EU asylum system.
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7
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European Union in the World 2025: Scenarios for EU relations with its neighbours and strategic partners

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, May 26, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Who would have thought a decade ago that not only the European Union but also its neighbourhood both in the East and in the South would have been turned upside down due to a series of crises? Back in 2006 the EU had gone through a successful ‘big bang’ enlargement absorbing ten Central and Eastern European countries and was about to take two more states on board. The economy was doing well, ideas for establishing a ‘ring of friends’ in the immediate neighbourhood were flowering and Russia was seen as a close partner. Yet things have gone differently than might have expected. The financial crisis, the Arab Spring and its consequences, the Russian annexation of Crimea and the war in Ukraine, the development of ISIS, the war in Syria and the growing number of refugees and migrants from North Africa and the Middle East are challenges the European Union has been facing in recent years.

Although predictions of the end of the European project seem to be premature, it has become obvious that the EU is in a serious crisis, both as an idea and as an organisation and international actor. Therefore simply reacting to crises is no longer an option. The EU desperately needs to think and act strategically if it wants to survive and to have any influence on the global stage.

Above all, it needs to define its future-oriented interests and how these interests can be reconciled with values that the EU attempts to project and protect. Against this backdrop, the Dahrendorf Forum – Debating Europe initiated a foresight project which aimed to set out different scenarios for the future relationship between the European Union and the five countries/regions of the Dahrendorf Forum: Ukraine and Russia, Turkey, MENA, United States and China.

The alternative futures engage in defining the most likely trajectories, downside risks, new trends and ‘unknown unknowns’. By reflecting the forward-looking challenges, the Dahrendorf Foresight Project tries to assess the EU’s role in the world in 2025.
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64
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A Game Changer? The EU's preparatory action on Defence Research

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, April 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The Preparatory Action for Common Security and Defence Policy‐related research is currently under preparation, and it will serve as a test‐bed to prove the relevance of defence‐related research at the European Union‐level. The Preparatory Action could potentially see between €75 ‐ €100 million invested in defence‐specific research over a three‐year period beginning in 2017. The Preparatory Action follows on from a pilot project on CSDP research that was launched by the European Parliament with a budget line of €1.5 million over the 2015‐2016 period. The Preparatory Action aims to serve as a basis for an eventual, fully‐fledged, European Defence Research Programme. Indeed, should the work of the Preparatory Action prove successful, the next step would be to insert a specific thematic area on defence research within the next multi‐annual financial framework (2021‐2027) potentially worth some €3.5 billion.
The idea to specifically invest EU funds in defence research is potentially a ‘gamechanger’. Traditionally, the EU has suffered from important constraints when using EU funds for defence‐related activities. Presently, projects and programmes funded under the European Structural and Investment Funds, COSME (Europe’s programme for SMEs) and Horizon 2020 are still largely geared towards civilian rather than military projects, even though defence‐related projects are not formally excluded. One of the chief objectives of the Preparatory Action and of any eventual European Defence Research Programme is to enhance Europe’s strategic autonomy by investing in key defence technologies.
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14
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An Arctic Redesign: Recommendations to Rejuvenate the Arctic Council

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, March 14, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The Arctic Council was launched in 1996 as an informal, consensual, and cooperative mechanism without either legal personality or operational mandate. It was designed to enhance measures to collectively protect the Arctic’s environment and to explore sustainable development opportunities. The Arctic Council turns 20 years old in 2016, and it has grown larger and more complex - welcoming new observer states such as China and India, initiating two legally binding agreements on search and rescue and oil spill response, and creating a permanent Secretariat. As the increasingly dynamic Arctic environment undergoes vast physical and geopolitical transformations, is the 20-year old Arctic Council’s organizational structure adequate and fit for its purpose? Can the Council remain at the center of Arctic-related activities under its current mandate? Is a substantial rethink of the Council’s governance structure necessary to ensure its productivity and longevity for the next 20 years? This report considers these questions and outlines four possible scenarios and strategies for Arctic Council reform and repair, as well as the implications for the Arctic Council in the future.
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28
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The Future of US Global Leadership Implications for Europe, Canada and Transatlantic Cooperation

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Today’s global challenges are developing faster than ever as the world grows more interdependent. Advanced technologies are empowering individuals and organizations in new and unpredictable ways, creating new partnerships but also enabling the rise of new adversaries. A wide array of actors – from non-state groups to rogue states to revisionist powers – are testing these new tools. In parallel, the international system built in the second half of the 20th century is being challenged by emerging regional and global powers, while environmental and other transnational issues have become a determining factor in geopolitics. The resulting complexity and growing number of challenges have made the global security environment more difficult to navigate. It is in this context that the transatlantic relationship is evolving.
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20
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Alliance at Risk

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, February 26, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Despite Russian aggression in Ukraine and growing threats along NATO’s southern flank, many European allies find it difficult to increase their defense capabilities and meet the commitments they made at the Wales Summit. To address this important challenge, the Atlantic Council produced its Alliance at Risk report, which draws together noted experts and former senior officials to examine the vulnerabilities in European defense and provide recommendations on the way forward. The project highlights six leading nations from NATO’s north, south, east, and west, which also serves to illuminate the many perspectives and diverse defense priorities that exists within the Alliance today.
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52
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Security and Public Order Report

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, February 18, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The security situation facing the Middle East is grave and appears to be trending toward greater violence and instability. The Middle East Strategy Task Force's Security and Public Order report, published in cooperation with the Brookings Institution, demonstrates that states of the region have tended to focus on traditional, external threats but the internal threats they face—from domestic unrest, state failure, and civil war—have become both more common and dangerous.

It is highly unlikely that these security problems will solve themselves or that regional states will be able to resolve them on their own. Given the ongoing importance of Middle Eastern energy resources to the international economy, the region’s central geographic location, its multiplicity of terrorist groups, and the extent of regional anger at numerous other countries for their predicament, it would be a mistake to assume that these security problems will not affect the wider world. Already the problems of terrorism and refugees generated by Middle Eastern upheaval have made many Americans, Europeans, Russians, and Middle Easterners want to take action themselves.
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48
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The Future of Capitalist Democracy UK–Japan Perspectives

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, February 1, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Domestic political backlashes against inequality, corporate malfeasance and the stagnation of real incomes over the past decade are being reinforced by uncertainties about the durability of the post-Cold War international order. Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine, China’s strategic and territorial claims in the South China and East China seas, the rise of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and the Syrian civil war, the migrant crisis affecting Europe and the Mediterranean, and evolving threats to cyber security – all constitute serious challenges to the rules of the global game.
A natural, and perhaps inevitable, question that emerges in the light of such concerns is: ‘How can the United Kingdom and Japan work together to deal with these issues?’ This, however, is a question more appealing to diplomats than to scholars or journalists. We are sceptical about the idea that bilateral cooperation can play a significant role in these matters, even if we are not at all opposed to it. Rather, we feel – and our feeling was confirmed by the September discussions – that what is most valuable is to enhance British and Japanese awareness and understanding of each other’s perspectives and, in particular, of the differences in emphasis or priority seen in the two countries, and thereby to help each other promote solutions more effectively in multilateral forums.
This essay aims to contribute to that process. There is plainly a great deal of overlap and agreement between Japan and the UK on many issues. There is always a lot that each country can learn from the other. But it is in the differences – whether of perspective, of experience or of emphasis – that the most important learnings lie. This essay will therefore explore differences more zealously than it seeks similarities.
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30
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Munich Security Report 2015: Collapsing Order, Reluctant Guardians?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, January 26, 2015
Abstract in English: 
this report described in the press release as "an annual digest on critical questions and important trends in the field of international security policy." The first section of the report focuses on the roles of international actors, Germany, United States, Europe, NATO, Russia, and emerging powers. The second section discusses three "hot spots"-- Ukraine, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific. The third section reviews major issues such as terrorism, energy security, and refugee crises, and the fourth section suggests additional reading and research materials.
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Munich Security Report 2016: Boundless Crises, Reckless Spoilers, Helpless Guardians

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, January 28, 2016
Abstract in English: 
This report compiles data, analyses and maps which illuminate major developments and critical challenges to international security. The MSR serves as a conversation starter for the 52nd Munich Security Conference (MSC) and as a background reading for MSC participants, but is also made available to security professionals and the interested public.

Among the key topics of this year’s edition are the crisis of the European security order, the war in Syria and the global activities of jihadist terrorist groups. Moreover, the report sheds light on the refugee crisis and the security implications of global climate and health policies.

The report was prepared in cooperation with numerous renowned partners, including Chatham House, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), IHS Jane’s, UNHCR and the Mercator Institute for China Studies.
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80
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