European Council on Foreign Relations

ECFR: Best of 2012

As we prepare to break up for the Christmas holiday, rather than our usual round up of the week’s work at ECFR, here are a selection of highlights from the whole of 2012.

  • The “European Foreign Policy Scorecard 2012” showed that Europe still had a long way to go when it comes to impact on the global stage, although it was notable that “smaller” states like Sweden and Poland were starting to lead the way in foreign policy alongside the traditional larger member states. How well did Europe do over the last twelve months? The third annual Scorecard will be along in January 2013 and will reveal all.
  • We also published a series of fourteen papers looking at how the crisis was affecting the European debate in individual EU member states. In January we’ll be publishing a compendium of the (updated) papers, which cover France, Denmark, the Netherlands, Portugal, the UK, Greece, Finland, Poland, Bulgaria, Spain, Ireland, Germany, Italy, and the Czech Republic. Our “Europe at the Crossroads” project also focussed specifically on how the debate over Europe has been developing in the UK.
  • Our Middle East/North Africa programme has also been hyperactive, with events in Syria and the political situation in Egypt and North Africa the main focus of attention. “A power audit of EU-North Africa relations” gave a comprehensive overview of the latter, with an assessment of Europe’s role in the region. Among our other publications we had papers looking at Syria and the potential implications for both Lebanon and Jordan. Much, much more is in the pipeline!
  • The main event in Wider Europe was the re-election of Vladimir Putin, and we published “The end of the Putin consensus”, examining how Russia might shape up during his second coming. The programme also looked at other corners of wider Europe, from Azerbaijan and Moldova to the Western Balkans and Ukraine. The second annual Germia Hill conference in Kosovo was just one of many notable events ECFR was involved in over 2012.
  • This time last year we published our short preview of the coming twelve months – click here for the “Ten Trends for 2012” to see how well our predictions measured up to reality. We’ll be publishing the “Ten Trends for 2013” on New Year’s Day.
  • As well as our main publications, our website has a steady stream of commentary pieces, blog posts, audio podcasts (mainly in English and Spanish), and information about events across Europe. We’ve also started publishing the audio from many of our (public) events, and following the China 3.0 project we hope to be using far more video in the year ahead. We are also making all of our reports available for users of Kindles and other e-readers. You can, as ever, track us down on Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms, and also sign up for the “MENA watch” email that rounds up the best weekly analysis of the Middle East North Africa region.


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