The Standing of Europe in the New Imperial World Order

The Convoco! Edition is an annual book series that collects contributions from our thinkers on Convoco’s annual topics. The edition is published in both German and English.

The Standing of Europe in the New Imperial World Order

Series: Convoco! Edition

Contributors: Fredrik Erixon, Gabriel Felbermayr, Birke Häcker, Matthias Karl, Parag Khanna, Kai A. Konrad, Stefan Korioth, Jörn Leonhard, Timo Meynhardt, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Edi Rama, Stefan Oschmann, Christoph G. Paulus, Rupprecht Podszun, Jörg Rocholl, Sven Simon, Yael Tamir, Roberto Viola, Claudia Wiesner

Pages: 368

ISBN 978-1-9163673-0-2

Paperback: £11.99

Available here

Price EPUB: $5.99

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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.

Stefan Oschmann

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.

Edi Rama

“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.
Birke Häcker

We have to tolerate differences and not level them prematurely if we want to make progress towards a new European core.

Jörn Leonhard

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.

Parag Khanna

China and Germany are mutually interdependent. Germany and Europe need to develop strategically to be prepared for the challenges of the future.

Jörg Rocholl

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.

Gabriel Felbermayr

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.

Timo Meynhardt

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.

Stefan Korioth

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.

Sven Simon

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.

Fredrik Erixon

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.

Roberto Viola

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.

Matthias Karl

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.

Rupprecht Podszun

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.

Yael Tamir

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.

Claudia Wiesner



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