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The Europe in the World Programme starts from the firm assumption that the development of the European Union as an autonomous international actor in all areas of external action is a positive evolution. It offers the best chances for effective European policies to safeguard and enhance universal values and the national interests of EU Member States in an increasingly multipolar world. At the same time, the programme aims to critically and scientifically examine EU objectives, instruments and means, in order to assess their effectiveness, identify the weaknesses, and offer some recommendations for the way ahead, so as to improve the “strategic actorness” of the Union. Our research focuses on European strategy and strategic culture; European and transatlantic military and civilian institutions, capabilities, and industries; the EU’s strategic partnerships with great and emerging powers; as well as political and security developments in key geographic areas (Europe’s southern neighbourhood and the Asia-Pacific region). The programme also covers various aspects of Belgian diplomacy, and in the past has undertaken extensive research on terrorism.

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(Photo credit: S. Solberg J. and Kolja21)

The main objective of the Africa Programme is to conduct research on political, economic, social and security issues and developments relating to Central and Eastern Africa. This research also relates to the major trends on the African continent (African Union, Regional Integration, conflict analysis and post-conflict reconstruction, state building and peace building) and it analyses the role and position of the EU in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Through its own research and publications, a wide range of contacts, partnerships and activities with national and international research institutes, public authorities and NGOs, the programme contributes to the Belgian and international policy debate on Africa. The main tool for that policy debate is the ‘Observatoire de l’Afrique’ a network of European and African institutes and experts on peace and security issues in Africa. The ambition of the ‘Observatoire de l’Afrique’ is to promote open and constructive dialogue and debate, and to provide useful analysis to a wide range of policy makers.

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(Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Situated in Brussels at the heart of EU political decision-making, the European Affairs Programme aims to provide in-depth as well as policy-oriented analyses on a wide range of topics of relevance to EU policy-makers. Special attention is devoted to those matters that are – or ought to be – at the heart of the EU policy debate. Aside from a continuous focus on institutional matters, various substantive EU policies dominate the research agenda, such as the single market, energy and climate and the EU budget. The Programme also deals extensively with the evolution of the Economic and Monetary Union in the context of the economic and financial crisis.

Intent on reaching the broadest audience possible, the European Affairs Programme seeks to share its expertise and stimulate the debate on the European project through a variety of publications as well by organizing roundtables, expert-seminars and conferences.

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(Photo credit: TPCOM, Flickr)