Upcoming Event: “After the US Elections: Perspectives on the future of the transatlantic relationship”

Source: Flickr.com, Cain and Todd Benson

Thursday, 15 November 2012

12.00 – 19.00h

Venue: Hotel Silken Berlaymont, “De Gasperi” Room, Blvd Charlemagne 11-19, 1000 Brussels

The transatlantic relationship is shaped by shared values and shared goals. The occa-sionally different assessments and evaluations across all political fields between the White House, Congress as well as the European capitals, show that the relationship is not purely plain sailing despite its “strategic importance”.  On 6 November, 2012 the American people will have voted for the 57th time on who will occupy the highest office in the country. In the course of this conference we will discuss the implications the election of the new or the re-election of the old President of the United States will have for the economic, trade, foreign and security policy aspects of the transatlantic relationship.

For more information and to register, click here.

After the tension of the era Bush, European expectations of the Obama Presidency were unrealistically high in 2008 and were naturally curbed in the following years. Intermittently, Europe even felt a little neglected. Such as when Obama cancelled his attendance of the EU-US Summit 2010 in Madrid. We now have to ask ourselves what rank Europe will hold on the new/old President’s priority list? Considering his domestic challenges, how much time will he even have for the tendance of the US relationship with Europe? (Panel 1)

Europe and the US have in common that they struggle with a sovereign debt crisis, economic problems and high unemployment. Consequently, they are also under a lot of domestic pressure. For the past four years the US has focused increasingly on its bilateral relationship with Asian markets, while multilateral efforts did not receive much attention. What path will the new/old President embark on during the next term? What does the future hold for economic cooperation, such as the “US-EU High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth”, and might there be new chances for a transatlantic free trade agreement? (Panel 2)

Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan. Despite common global challenges, the transatlantic partners have a different understanding of security and democratization. For some time they have been discussing disparate positions regarding the long-term objective and legitimization of NATO.  Besides, the disunity over the intervention in Libya once more highlighted the frequently criticized inability of the European Union member states to agree on a join position in their Common Security and Defence Policy.  Will the result of the elections influence the foreign and security policy priorities of the United States and the EU? Will there be a new allocation of roles in future international operations? Will Europe manage to improve their coordination of policies or can the US pit the Europeans against each other?  (Panel 3)