Greetings from Norway – Elodie Thevenin currently on her STSM to Oslo

We have another STSM ongoing right now – Elodie Thevenin from the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland, is visiting at the ARENA – Centre for European Studies in Oslo, Norway, currently. Here’s what she writes to us:

“I have been in Oslo for a week already on my first STSM. It is a pleasure and honor for me to be hosted in ARENA Centre for European Studies. The working environment is amazing, and the team very kind and welcoming. Outside of hard work on parliamentary data, this mission is also a great opportunity to discover more Oslo.”

Public Panel: “EU Foreign Policy in Times of Populism”

We are proud to announce our next Public Panel – “EU Foreign Policy in Times of Populism”.

It will take place on 27 February, 18:00-19:30, Diplomatic Academy Vienna.


  • Gerda Falkner (Professor at University of Vienna): Right Wing Populist Parties in the EU and their positions on Foreign Policy
  • Ivan Krastev (Permanent Fellow, Institute for Human Sciences, Vienna): After Europe
  • Kristi Raik (Director Estonian Foreign Policy Institut)

CfP “Contemporary Challenges in the field of Non-Proliferation/Arms Control Policy and EU Responses”

We are pleased to announce a Working Group 1 (New Realities)-workshop in Vienna on 26 and 27 February 2020.

This workshop aims to thorough discussions of the contemporary challenges in the field of non-proliferation and arms control diplomacy. The workshop will thus have sessions on the upcoming NPT review conference and its likely outcome as well as sessions on the state of contemporary arms control, focusing on what’s up and down after the fate of the ABM and INF treaties, the Iran deal in tatters, the North Korea no-deal and the MTCR seriously challenged. How do participants read the situation and how do they see likely developments?

The workshop will also have an EU perspective, not least in terms of analysing the EU’s performance in the field on international non-proliferation policy, a field in which the EU during the last few decades has engaged ever more and, at the same time, continuously experienced the constraints that characterize highly state-centric diplomatic practices.

Finally, the workshop will focus on characterizing the strategic environment in which non-proliferation diplomacy is situated. While such diplomacy emerged during the Cold War and developed further in long shadows of Cold War, perhaps we are now in a completely non-Cold War era, characterized by a difficult to read US, a more assertive Russia and an emerging superpower China.

The call for papers is now open.

Please refer to the link below.


CfP “Contestation and politicization of EU foreign policy: New realities or same old?”

We are pleased to announce a Working Group 3 (Contestation)-workshop in Vienna on 26 and 27 February 2020.

Contestation and politicization are ubiquitous in the fields of International Relations and European Studies. The distinct strands of literature that analyze how international norms and institutions, globalization, and European integration are contested have soared. Slower but steadily, interest has also grown on how this affects EU foreign policy, since it is situated at the intersection of many of these concerns. Interest in contestation and politicization has increased substantially among EU foreign policy scholars. From TTIP to the Global Compact for Migration, from the relationship with Russia to climate change, many issues appear now more open to contention than they used to be. Some of the mechanisms that facilitated agreement among EU Member States seem to be on the verge of collapse, some previously consensual issues have now become controversial, and in some specific cases the level of mass engagement and public debate is (nearly) unprecedented.

Nonetheless, reasonable doubts can be raised as regards the novelty and conceptual clarity of this line of research. The terms contestation and politicization sometimes are used interchangeably, which in itself should be a source of concern. They can also be used in ways that make them difficult to distinguish from intra-EU disagreement and politics more generally, which leads to the question of whether this most recent wave of interest in political conflict on EU foreign policy is really onto something new, or whether this is just old wine in new wineskins.

The workshop will address this need for conceptualization and at the same time look at the changing politics of EU foreign policy, with the aim of making a contribution that helps shape up existing literature. In order to foster a greater degree of consistency in our discussions, the co-convenors will circulate a concept paper well ahead of the workshop and will invite all participants to speak to (some of) its proposals and questions. We aim to make progress towards a publication project that will further be discussed during the workshop.

The call for papers is now open.

Please refer to the link below.

Call for papers WG3 Vienna

CfP Workshop and Winter Training School in Aarhus in November 2019!

We are pleased to announce a workshop and a winter training school in Aarhus in November 2019. The calls for papers are now open. Please refer to the links below.

Workshop: Theorizing New Realities – EU foreign policy facing new challenges

Winter Training School: Images of Europe at Times of Global Challenges: Perceptions of EU (foreign) policy making inside and outside Europe – Theoretical, Methodological and Empirical Reflections

We look forward to receiving your applications!

Second ITC Conference Grant Successfully Completed

Dr. Marko Lovec, Research fellow and Assistant Professor at University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Science, received an ITC Conference Grant to participate at the International Studies Association’s Annual Conference entitled Re-Visioning International Studies: Innovation and Progress, which took place in Toronto between 27 and 30 March 2019. Lovec chaired a panel co-organized by central and East European International Studies Associations on small Central and East European (CEE) EU member states and presented a paper (co-authored by prof. Ana Bojinović Fenko) on populist foreign policy in those countries. While populism is not new to political science it has recently received increased attention demonstrated by the number of panel dedicated to this issue, with CEE countries such as Hungary and Poland often serving as an extreme example of populist-illiberal regimes. In contrast to this, according to the literature, International Relations (IR) discipline has so far failed to grasp the impact of populists on foreign policy due to lack of attention for systemic factors within Foreign policy analysis on one hand and lack of attention for party politics within IR and comparative politics on the other. The empirical research by the author confirms this by showing that within foreign policy arena, populists are more affected and socialized by the international system than vice versa and that apart from rhetoric, populism tends to be reserved for particular identity issues such as migration. Nevertheless, this does not make populist foreign policy completely benign since it often leads to poor diplomacy and loss of credibility as well as weakening of multilateral order which is harmful for small states depending relatively more on normative and institutional resources.



CfP: Two Workshops in Porto, Portugal, in July 2019

We are delighted to announce two upcoming workshops in Porto, Portugal, in early July 2019. Calls for papers are now open. You can find further information using the links below.

Scientific Workshop ‘Determinants of EU Foreign Policy Contestation’, 8-9 July 2019 (abstract submission deadline 30 April 2019)

Scientific Worshop ‘De-Europeanization and the EU’s International Relations’, 9-10 July 2019 (abstract submission deadline 25 May 2019)

Off to a Good Start: Two Scientific Workshops and First ENTER Spring School in Darmstadt, Germany

Two scientific workshops and the first COST ENTER Springschool in Darmstadt, Germany, were off to a strong start in March 2019. The events were co-hosted with the Second Management Committee Meeting of COST Action ENTER (CA17119). You can find more detailed reports of each activity below:


WG2 Workshop: EU’s Climate and Energy Policy

The Union’s role in developing international climate regimes and organizing international energy markets have, together with ambitious climate and energy policies followed by several European countries, elevated the importance of both climate and energy policies within many of the EU’s policy arenas. The workshop provided both substantive and ideational account for the Union’s engagement in climate and energy politics. It opened with an overview of the contemporary energy and climate policy landscape in the EU, focusing on the main political trends which come along the increasingly closer entanglement of the two. Within the ideational reflection of these trends, the workshop focused on the self-perception of the key climate and energy actors both at the European and the national level, as well as the reflection of the Union’s position in the international climate and energy regimes by third parties such as non-European countries and international institutions. Finally, the workshop nuanced these reflections by engaging policy practitioners. Throughout the workshop, questions such as “What is the current state of the EU’s climate and energy policy?”, “What ideas are attached to it?”, “How do these ideas resonate among the member states and outside the EU?”, “Are there any competing narratives in the perception of the EU as a climate actor?” were raised and discussed.


WG4 Workshop: Communicating EU Foreign Policy

Twelve researchers from all across Europe convened to discuss EU foreign policy with a focus on the communicative and discursive dimension of Europe an policy-making and diplomacy. Several participants discussed regional challenges to EU foreign policy with regard to their discursive dimension: be it the EU’s contested reputation in Macedonia and the Kosovo (Mare Ushkovska), or the EU’s strategic standing in the Middle East region (Nuri Korkmaz). Two participants zoomed in on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with Taylon Ozgur Kaya focusing on the ways in which the EU exerts discursive power in the Israeli-Pal

estinian conflict, and Bill Kappis exploring a very special relationship – the new and unexpected diplomatic alliances between Greece and Israel. Furthermore, Asligul Sarikamis highlighted the EU’s Sahel strategy and documented how European policy frames towards Africa have been redefined with regard to the security-development nexus. Franziska Müller explored how EU-Africa relations reflect the EU’s new role as  a “normative power”, and how this role becomes contested throughout the Post-Lomé process and the negotiations for Economic Partnership Agreements. Norm promotion stood also at the centre of Dale Mineshima-Lowe’s contribution, which examined how the EU’s normative power is challenged by its current internal strife.

Other scholars zoomed in on European diplomacy. Heidi Maurer investigated the specific diplomatic qualities only a supra-national structure such as the European ones can create and concluded that the EU has created a unique diplomacy system, whose qualities are still underestimated. Martin Chovancik concentrated on the signaling aspect of EU restrictive measures and assessed the signaling aspect of sanctions regimes. Sanctions also were the subject of Emma Scott’s work, whose comparative analysis investigated how different EU member states refer to the nuclear deal with Iran. Catarina Thomson provided an ‘inside view’ by presenting the first-ever UK Security Survey, which captures security preferences of UK security elites, thereby demonstrating the growing breach that exists between British political elites and mass audiences since the 2016 referendum to leave the European Union. Aziz Elmuradov brought in a complementary perspective, by presenting a historiographic analysis of Russian geopolitical standpoints and foreign policy attitudes towards Europe, in light of pre-existing views on the Self and the Other. In a final wrap-up session the Working Group members developed an agenda for their future research, and concentrated on a number of conference panels. Future themes might focus on EU-Middle East relations, securitization and the security/development nexus, and also on threats to the liberal order.


WG1 Spring School: (Re-)Conceptualizing or (Re-)Theorizing how the EU faces New Realities

During the four days, 25 young researchers from 13 different countries were taught by 10 internationally renowned scholars about cutting-edge ways to conceptualize or theorize contemporary EU foreign policy as well as the new realities the EU is facing. The contestation of the liberal world order, the international turbulence and the increasingly conflict prone neighbourhood of the EU were analysed including their linkages to EU-domestic conflicts, marked by austerity, Brexit, nationalism, protectionism and populism. The main outcome of the school was that it seems necessary to broaden our perspectives and to reconsider traditional theories that appear outdated due to their limited ability to develop a far-reaching comprehension of dis-jointed realities. Scholars thus face the significant challenge it is to re-conceptualize and re-theorize the EUs foreign relations in a changing world. Within this context, the students had the chance to engage with 10 lecturers who elaborated on these issues. The training school came to a conclusion with a round table in which all lecturers participated and the importance of a multi-layered, multi-cultural and interdisciplinary approach was highlighted, an approach that enables us to understand the complexity of the EU facing new realities of the world.


The original calls for participation for each event are available here:

Scientific Workshop – EU’s Climate and Energy Policy

Scientific Workshop – Communicating EU Foreign Policy

Management Committee Meeting

First ENTER Spring School 2019


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Dr. Jonas Schoenefeld, back row, 4th from the left

COST ENTER Manager Dr. Jonas Schoenefeld at Action Sustainability Event

COST ENTER Manager and MC Member Dr. Jonas Schoenefeld represented COST Action ENTER (CA17119) and COST Action INOGOV (IS1309) at the COST Academy Networking event on the Sustainability of Actions. Primilarly attended by current and former Action chairs, the event was an opportunity to discuss efforts to ensure the continuation of COST actions beyond their funding lifetime. Key ideas emerging from the meeting include founding an association, setting up a book series or producing a land-mark, integrative scientific communication. The environmental sustainability of COST activities was also subject to significant debate, with a conclusion that the COST Association should produce a sustainability strategy of its own.

Dr. Jonas Schoenefeld, back row, 4th from the left.

Kick-off meeting, Brussels October 2018

Our kick-off meeting took place on the 5th of  October 2018 at the COST Headquarters in Brussels.

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