The Standing of Europe in the New Imperial World Order
The Standing of Europe in the New Imperial World Order
Europe is in a transition period between independent nation states and a unified Europe. The crises of the EU – the financial crisis, the migration crisis, Brexit – endanger the European idea. Next to Europe’s peace project, other meaning-inciting narratives need to emerge in order to harness emotions for Europe-wide societal cohesion.
But how can we create a European unity from national diversity? In light of confronting global challenges, such a unity seems as necessary today as ever. It is paramount to consider Europe’s fundamental values, concepts, and identities in contemplating how Europe can benefit the world.
We need a European Union that is a leader in science and technology, and whose researchers and entrepreneurs rank among global technology leaders. Such a Europe will flourish, ensure the prosperity of its citizens, and play a role in shaping the world of the 21st century.
By comparison with the US and China, Europe appears to be falling behind as a result of its diversity. A shared uniformity of appearance and action is lacking throughout. But maybe we can find strength in this dissonance, and such examples already exist.
Christoph G. Paulus
The thing is this: what brings us all together is Europe. What makes our lives easier somehow is Europe. What makes Europe’s life more difficult, however, is that there is no shared story.
“Legal identity” in modern-day Europe is to be found on two different levels: on the one hand in the various national legal traditions, and on the other hand on the supra-national plane. Consistent with the European motto “united in diversity,” the main criterion is not external demarcation, but internal integration.
We have to tolerate differences and not level them prematurely if we want to make progress towards a new European core.
Europeans must be more unified in their approach to Asia to avoid being divided by China and others in the areas of investment and human rights.
China and Germany are mutually interdependent. Germany and Europe need to develop strategically to be prepared for the challenges of the future.
In a world of new geostrategic rivalry and systems competition, where key players are driven by zero-sum reasoning, Europe must ask itself what its own interests are and how it can defend them.
In a world where a hegemonic power defines the goals of the alliance and these goals no longer correspond with the goals of the other members, the other members may focus on their own goals and pursue them independently.
Kai A. Konrad
The European idea can strengthen the self-image of European leaders by offering strength and confidence.
There are many categories of the unbuilt. There are projects that are too big to be realized. There are also projects that are too small to be realized. There are projects that are censored, and then, as Doris Lessing once told me, there are projects that are self-censored. I think we all have projects that we have not yet dared to do.
Hans Ulrich Obrist
The issue must be how the great project of European integration based on peace and liberty can gain new impetus and consent. A promising way forward could be the reduction of European responsibilities and a greater openness to particular issues that are not flattened by the horizontal effect of European law.
We should spend more time thinking about what constitutes Europe culturally, and then create rituals that help Europe to be united. The European idea needs emotion, and European citizens must be able to feel enthusiastic about it, as only then will a common feeling of European identity emerge.
Corinne Michaela Flick
It is our decision whether to overcome old myths and meet current challenges. It is our decision whether to make the European Union sustainable through its economic, environmental, and security policy, and whether we Europeans altogether are able to act. The future of Europe is in our hands.
Unless Europe can establish itself in the vanguard of the market rules and institutions that will guide the 21st-century economy, it will find that the rest of the world will become less interested in Europe’s position and contributions in other areas.
If Europe changes gear and starts looking at public services and the economy at large, and how to transform them digitally, we can create our own digital path, differentiating us from the “digital imperialism” approach of some, or the major influence of a few powerful players from the private sector.
A truly legitimate competition policy can no longer ignore the question of how, in a system of undistorted competition, one should define relevant product and geographic markets.
It is a misperception to see the absence of formal regulation as freedom. If there is no framework, rules are set by the strongest actors.
Acknowledging the way elites, maybe unintentionally, betrayed some of their duties to their people, we must ask ourselves how we are going to contribute to a process that allows more people to share in the opportunities we promised they will have. It is a challenge. If we meet this challenge, maybe we will be able to create a better political future for all of us.
The EU combines economic prosperity and social equality with the values derived from Article 2 of the EU Treaty: respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law, respect for human rights, pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity, and the equality of women and men. This “European success model” is unparalleled in the world.