EU foreign policy experiences unprecedented turbulences that put key achievements of the European integration project at risk. Externally, the EU’s global environment is characterized by the reconfiguration of power, growing divisions, and the contestation of established liberal order. Simultaneously, the EU’s neighbourhood is increasingly conflict-prone and unstable, triggering migration flows and the proliferation of illiberal values.
Domestically, the EU faces severe internal conflicts, marked by austerity, Brexit, growing nationalism, populism and new protectionism. The Action ENTER aims to improve our understanding of central properties of EU foreign policy in light of these new realities, focusing on perceptions, communication, contestation. In today’s world, the success of EU foreign policy depends on the EU’s ability to instantaneously respond to stimuli and pressures originating from both the international and the intra-EU levels.
Linking internal and external policy dynamics, the Action has a strong potential for breakthrough scientific developments. A central objective of the action is to derive theoretically informed, policy-relevant advice for the EU’s strategic approach to its international relations, its communication, and for dealing with the interaction between internal and external challenges.
It will generate a step change in how the new realities of EU foreign policy are theorized and addressed. This will be achieved by establishing multi-national, multidisciplinary collaborations at the nexus of policy fields and research communities that have not sufficiently communicated in the past. Substantive efforts to bridge between the academic-practitioner divide are made, to synthesize knowledge, facilitate shared understandings, and inform EU foreign policy.
Photo credits: Banner – Claus Völker