Europe Articles

To most people the Arctic is a distant realm, almost another world, inhabited by polar bears. They may even think the frigid landmasses and icy seas of the Arctic are irrelevant to daily life further south.

By Jens Stoltenberg  |  September 30, 2013

To most people the Arctic is a distant realm, almost another world, inhabited by polar bears. They may even think the frigid landmasses and icy seas of the Arctic are irrelevant to daily life further south.

By Jens Stoltenberg  |  September 30, 2013

The six East European and South Caucasian countries of the EU’s so-called Eastern Partnership program all belong, in one way or another, to Europe. Nevertheless, none of them have so far been officially offered the prospect of entering the EU once they and the EU would be ready for accession. Indeed, two of the Eastern Partners of the EU, Belarus and Azerbaidjan, are currently too far away from EU standards to discuss such entrance. However, the four remaining countries – Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Ukraine – could already today be given an explicit promise to start accession negotiations once they meet the EU’s fundamental conditions for membership. Brussels should not any longer wait with opening this prospect. The history of the EU’s engagement with Central and East European countries illustrates why this is the case.

By Andreas Umland  |  June 6, 2013

The six East European and South Caucasian countries of the EU’s so-called Eastern Partnership program all belong, in one way or another, to Europe. Nevertheless, none of them have so far been officially offered the prospect of entering the EU once they and the EU would be ready for accession. Indeed, two of the Eastern Partners of the EU, Belarus and Azerbaidjan, are currently too far away from EU standards to discuss such entrance. However, the four remaining countries – Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Ukraine – could already today be given an explicit promise to start accession negotiations once they meet the EU’s fundamental conditions for membership. Brussels should not any longer wait with opening this prospect. The history of the EU’s engagement with Central and East European countries illustrates why this is the case.

By Andreas Umland  |  June 6, 2013

Switzerland & the Future of Elections

The Internet has had a profound impact on the way contemporary democracies work. Neither processes, such as electoral campaigns, nor actors, such as candidates, political parties or movements, are immune to the myriad challenges and opportunities offered by new media. The same goes for various fundamental institutions of democracy, such as parliaments and governments, which have adopted Internet-based strategies for both internal and external information and communication needs.

By Alexander H. Trechsel, Urs Gasser  |  April 17, 2013

During his week-long visit at Harvard University in October of 2012, Douglas Alexander agreed to talk with the Harvard International Review about the European fiscal crisis, the state of the British economy, the job of opposition party leader David Cameron, as well as the foreign policy and security risks posed by Syria and Iran. As the EU begins its slow path to recover and Britain itself continues to face meager growth, Alexander has voiced strong opinions and clear policy suggestions for how to promote Britain’s shared interests with its global partners.

By Katya Johns  |  April 14, 2013

Roberto D’Alimonte, a senior Italian political analyst and prominent journalist for Italy’s major financial newspaper Il Sol 24 Ore, recently spoke with the Harvard International Review to give his take on what to expect from Italy’s elections at the end of this month. A professor of political science at the Guido Carli University in Rome, his research focuses on reforming the Italian electoral process. He has worked with the OECD and has been head of the Italian Center for Electoral Studies since 2005. 

By Roberto D'Alimonte  |  February 9, 2013

All too familiar with the current economic situations of Greece and Spain, Ireland currently finds itself in a peculiar position within the European Union. In the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis, the nation’s economy shrank more than ten percent and weathered one of the deepest recessions in its history. Through extensive global assistance and adherence to strict austerity measures, Ireland is poised in 2013 to become the first country to leave its EU bailout on schedule. Recent economic figures have shown slow market-access growth and led to praise from the European Commission for Ireland’s adherence to its fiscal plan.

By Katie Farineau  |  January 28, 2013

Secretary-General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Anders Fogh Rasmussen, likes to say that NATO is the “most successful alliance in history.” Few would dispute his claim. During the Cold War, NATO served as a bulwark against the Soviet Union. By uniting the West, it deterred Soviet invasion of Western Europe. Following the collapse of communism, NATO extended membership to former communist countries. Today, no other military pact can rival NATO’s political and military clout.

By Younghoon Moon  |  December 30, 2012

Over the past few years, extreme right-wing parties have gained popularity across Europe: performing strongly in opinion polls, winning seats in parliaments, and exercising greater influence over governmental decisions. While the movements vary in constitution from country to country, they are typically populist nationalist parties characterized by some combination of anti-immigrant, Islamophobic, xenophobic, and anti-EU policies. France, the Netherlands, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark have all recently seen particularly high growth in far-right parties. The expanding influence of these right-wing movements can be seen not just in their increased political power, but also in street demonstrations throughout Europe, and, in its most extreme form, in the violence wrought by Anders Breivik, the right-wing extremist who killed 69 people near Oslo in July 2011. Although far-right parties are by definition nationalist, and are therefore rooted country-specific grievances, many of the issues that have driven their recent resurgence are common across Europe, including anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiment and discontent with the European Union, particularly in light of the Eurozone crisis.

By Amy Lifland  |  December 30, 2012