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- The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership: An Accident Report - ECIPE Policy Brief — 29 January 2015, 17:03 CET
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) was launched with highest of ambitions. Yet after more than 500 days of negotiations, the results are plainly discouraging. The EU and the US misunderstood each other’s intention on market access, and deteriorated into retaliatory behaviour. Each side has also its set of politically sensitive issues, but TTIP negotiations stimulate sensitive issues when European governments are at their weakest. The revelations of US electronic surveillance and wiretapping coincided with the first round of TTIP talks; Europe’s decision to open up public consultations on ISDS gave the opposition space to congeal public opinion, and the anti-trade forces appear better organized and possibly even better funded than business groups.
It is in the interest of the US and EU to fashion a new, open and fair global trading system for the 21st century. But time is running out. Getting TTIP back on course will require, three elements. First, the EU and the US need a common understanding of ambitions. Are the parties negotiating a regular FTA, or a new form of an economic partnership going beyond any existing precedent? The second element concerns political leadership and mobilizing support – in the end, this question comes down to: Who is willing to pay for TTIP? The last element concerns the overarching objective of TTIP, which must be approached as strategic in its purpose. TTIP could be the third pillar of a new global economic governance together with TPP and EU-Asia agreements. TTIP should be the most comprehensive and sturdiest of these three pillars – not the weakest.
- An employment-oriented investment strategy for Europe - Studies on Growth with Equity - ILO — 28 January 2015, 15:37 CET
Against a backdrop of sluggish economic conditions and continued weak job creation, the Investment Plan proposed by the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker would provide a rapid economic stimulus that would foster Europe’s competitiveness at the same time as boosting much-needed employment creation. The main finding of this ILO report is that, if careful consideration is given to the design of the programme and its allocation, over 2.1 million net new jobs would be created by mid-2018.
- Eurofound Annual work programme 2015 — 13 January 2015, 21:25 CET
The year 2015 marks the third year of implementation of Eurofound’s four-year work programme 2013–2016, From crisis to recovery: Better informed policies for a competitive and fair Europe. The multiannual strategy laid down in the four-year programme provides Eurofound with a clear framework for the development of its annual programmes. The programme describes the policy context in which the Agency operates and defines the mission of the organisation and its core areas of expertise. It identifies four policy priority areas where Eurofound will provide high-quality, timely and policy-relevant knowledge as input to better informed policies. This is the Agency’s strategic objective for the 2013–2016 period.
- How To Run The European Parliament — 12 January 2015, 17:47 CET
How do you gain influence and publicity in the European Parliament? How do you compete successfully with the Council and the Commission? How can you use reporters and lobbyists to advance your political career?
How To Run The European Parliament offers a unique look behind the scenes and reveals the secret tactics and manoeuvres Members of the European Parliament need to master in order to prevail.
This brutally honest tutorial is a must-read for all MEPs, assistants, public servants, lobbyists, and journalists who want to understand how power politics is played.
- Pocket guide to EU's new fish and aquaculture consumer labels — 11 December 2014, 21:03 CET
From 13 December 2014, the rules for labels accompanying all fishery and aquaculture products for EU consumers change. This pocket guide explains what must appear on the new labels and what additional information can be displayed. This is a handy guide to help you apply the
new rules. It is neither a legal or formal document nor an exhaustive list of requirements.
- Transatlantic Relations: a European perspective - Regent's Report 2014 — 11 December 2014, 18:09 CET
The relationship between the EU and the US is one of the most important bilateral relationships in the world. They are the biggest economic and military powers in the world, they dominate global trade, and they play the leading roles in international political relations. Yet they have regularly disagreed with each other on a wide range of specific issues, as well as having often quite different political, economic, and social agendas. Regent's Report 2014 explores this complex relationship through 15 specially commissioned essays. This publication follows the inaugural Regent's Report 2013 The UK and Europe: Costs, Benefits, Options.
- The Census Hub: easy and flexible access to European census data — 09 December 2014, 23:12 CET
This leaflet from Eurostat presents information on the Census Hub: a new, easy and flexible way to access population and housing census data from all EU countries.
- 2014 EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard — 04 December 2014, 22:15 CET
The 2014 EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard (the Scoreboard) contains economic and financial data for the world's top 2500 companies ranked by their investments in research and development (R&D). The sample consists of 633 companies based in the EU and 1867 companies based elsewhere. The Scoreboard data are drawn from the latest available companies' accounts, i.e. usually the fiscal year 2013/14. The 2014 Scoreboard shows that Investment in research and development by companies based in the EU grew by 2.6% in 2013, despite the unfavourable economic environment. However, this growth has slowed in comparison to the previous year's 6.8%. It is also below the 2013 world average (4.9%), and lags behind companies based in the US (5%) and Japan (5.5%).
- Health at a Glance: Europe 2014 — 03 December 2014, 18:18 CET
This third edition of Health at a Glance: Europe presents the latest information on health and health systems in 35 European countries, including all European Union Member States, candidate countries (with the exception of Albania due to limited data availability) and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries. The selection of indicators is largely based on the European Core Health Indicators (ECHI) shortlist, a list of indicators that has been developed by the European Commission to guide the development and reporting of health statistics. It is complemented by additional indicators on health expenditure, quality of care and access to care, building on the OECD expertise in these areas.
Each health information area is based on health indicators including charts illustrating variations across countries and over time, brief descriptive analyses highlighting the major findings, and an information box on the definition of the indicators and possible limitations in data comparability. An annex provides additional information on the demographic and economic context in which health systems operate.
This publication is the result of collaboration between the OECD and the European Commission in the field of health information, with the help of national data correspondents from the 35 countries.
- Making the best use of EU money: a landscape review of the risks to the financial management of the EU budget — 25 November 2014, 22:15 CET
In its landscape review of risks to the financial management of the EU budget, published today, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) identifies key issues for good financial management of the EU's finances. All actors dealing with the EU budget, say the EU auditors, should focus on obtaining results and EU added value, while ensuring that EU money is properly accounted for and spent as intended.
- Jewish life in Ukraine: Achievements, challenges and priorities since the collapse of communism — 28 October 2014, 11:01 CET
Part of a four-part series funded by the Rothschild Foundation (Hanadiv) Europe that looks at Jewish life in east-central Europe since the collapse of communism, the Ukraine report calls for the development of a common organisational framework to bring together the various Jewish communities throughout the country; support from international foundations to enable the Jewish community to become less dependent on external sources of financial support; and a more inclusive policy on Jewish status issues given the high levels of intermarriage in the country.
In addition, the report stresses the need for enhancements in the field of Jewish education, with a particular emphasis on increasing the number of trained teachers and educators, and access to better quality Russian and Ukrainian-language educational materials. Given the extraordinary history of Jewish life in the country, the recommendations also push for the preservation of this heritage and the utilisation of it for community development purposes.
The report also explores the issue of antisemitism in Ukraine, and calls for the establishment of a centre to monitor antisemitic incidents, and to liaise with government, the police and security services to counter it.
The research was conducted by community activist and doctoral student Darina Privalko under the advice of Dr Betsy Gidwitz, a former Soviet-area specialist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Versions of the report are also available in Ukrainian and Russian.
- Jewish life in Germany: Achievements, challenges and priorities since the collapse of communism — 28 October 2014, 11:00 CET
A detailed look at Jewish life in Germany based on interviews with a broad range of German Jewish leaders. It explores how Jewish life has changed in Germany since the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the challenges posed by the huge influx of Jews and their families from the Former Soviet Union.
Part of a four-paper series looking at Jewish life in east-central Europe since the collapse of communism, the Germany report says that the question of whether Jews in German should be sitting on packed suitcases "has been answered with a resounding 'no' by prominent members of the community". Yet the question of how safe Jews are in Germany remains alive and well.
The research was conducted by author and journalist Toby Axelrod, and was funded by the Rothschild Foundation (Hanadiv) Europe. A German language version is also available.
- Jewish life in Poland: Achievements, challenges and priorities since the collapse of communism — 28 October 2014, 10:53 CET
A detailed look at Jewish life in Poland based on interviews with a broad range of Polish Jewish leaders. It highlights the 'multiplier effect' of Jewish heritage programming, and explores the impact of the post-communist Jewish revival on Polish society as a whole.
Part of a four-paper series looking at Jewish life in east-central Europe since the collapse of communism, the authors of the Poland report testify to the rebirth of a small community that has a disproportionate impact on world Jewry, not least because of the importance of Polish Jewish history and heritage.
The research was conducted by local experts working in partnership with JPR, and was funded by the Rothschild Foundation (Hanadiv) Europe. A Polish language version is also available.
- Jewish life in Hungary: Achievements, challenges and priorities since the collapse of communism — 28 October 2014, 10:49 CET
A detailed look at Jewish life in Hungary based on interviews with a broad range of Hungarian Jewish leaders. It calls for greater levels of co-operation and co-ordination between Jewish communal organizations and initiatives, and stresses a need for a more religiously pluralist communal environment.
Part of a four-paper series looking at Jewish life in east-central Europe since the collapse of communism, the authors of the Hungary report highlight the existence of a sharp critique of community management structures, and recommend urgent structural reform.
The research was conducted by the leading specialist in the sociology of Hungarian Jewry, and was funded by the Rothschild Foundation (Hanadiv) Europe. A Hungarian language version is also available.
- National student fee and support systems in European Higher Education 2014/2015 — 22 October 2014, 23:06 CET
Levels of student tuition or administrative fees, grants and loans continue to highlight stark differences across Europe, according to a report published by the European Commission's Eurydice network. The report, covering 33 European countries, reveals that fee systems have remained relatively stable across the continent, despite some notable exceptions. Germany is the only country to recently abolish tuition fees, despite introducing them only in 2007.
- Annual Report on European SMEs 2013-2014 - A Partial and Fragile Recovery — 06 October 2014, 15:58 CET
There can be no doubt that SMEs have had to navigate a difficult economic terrain in recent years. This Annual Report on the economic performance of European SMEs is a testament to those challenges – but also a window to the progress achieved by businesses across the EU28 in spite of these challenging economic conditions. The SME Performance Review is one of the main tools the European Commission uses to monitor and assess countries' progress in implementing the Small Business Act (SBA) on a yearly basis. With an emphasis on the measures from the SBA Action Plan, the review brings comprehensive information on the performance of SMEs in EU Member States and other 9 partner countries. It consists of two parts – Annual Report on European SMEs and SBA country fact sheets.
- Horizon Report Europe - 2014 Schools Edition — 02 October 2014, 21:45 CET
The NMC Horizon Project from the New Media Consortium is a long-term investigation launched in 2002 that identifies and describes emerging technologies likely to have a large impact over the coming five years in education around the globe. The NMC Horizon Report Europe: 2014 Schools Edition, the first of its kind for Europe, examines six key trends, six significant challenges and six important developments in educational technology that are very likely to impact educational change processes in European schools over the next five years (2014-2018). The topics within each section were carefully selected by the Horizon Project Europe Expert Panel, a body of 53 experts in European education, technology, and other fields. They come from 22 European countries, as well as international organisations and European networks. Throughout the report, references and links are made to more than 150 European publications (reports, articles, policy documents, blog posts etc.), projects (both EU-funded and national initiatives) and various policy initiatives from all over Europe. The Creative Classrooms multidimensional framework, developed by European Commission?s JRC-IPTS on behalf of DG EAC, was used for analysing the trends, challenges and technologies impacting European schools over the next five years. The analysis reveals that a systemic approach is needed for integrating new technologies in European schools and impacting educational change over the next five years.
- Application of EU Law: how EU Member States performed in 2013 — 01 October 2014, 18:14 CET
There has been a marked decrease in the number of on-going infringement cases in recent years whilst the number of cases resolved through in problem solving mechanisms such as EU Pilot has increased, according to the 31st Annual Report on monitoring the application of EU law, just published by the European Commission.
- Erasmus Impact Study - Effects of mobility on the skills and employability of students and the internationalisation of higher education institutions — 22 September 2014, 19:03 CET
This new study on the impact of the European Union's Erasmus student exchange programme shows that graduates with international experience fare much better on the job market.
- Matching Economic Migration with Labour Market Needs — 18 September 2014, 13:48 CET
This publication gathers the papers presented at the "OECD-EU dialogue on mobility and international migration: matching economic migration with labour market needs" (Brussels, 24-25 February 2014), a conference jointly organised by the European Commission and the OECD. It provides new evidence on the role that international migration has played in Europe and in selected other OECD countries over the past decade in terms of labour force; educational attainment; and occupational changes. It analyses the availability and use of migrants’ skills based on an in-depth literature review as well as new data analyses for Europe and the United States, Canada and the OECD as a whole, taking advantage of the International Survey of Adult Skills – PIAAC. Finally, several chapters discuss the potential role of international migration in meeting current and future labour market needs in Europe, in the United States and in the European Union. This work shows that although migration can make an important contribution to labour force growth, its role in counterbalancing the effects of population ageing will depend on the capacity of countries to match labour needs to migrants’ characteristics.
- FET Flagships: A novel partnering approach to address grand scientific challenges to boost innovation in Europe — 16 September 2014, 13:43 CET
The European Commission has published a report on its ambitious science and technology Flagships. The report draws the lessons from setting up the first two such Flagships, Graphene and the Human Brain Project, each representing an investment of EUR 1 billion.
- European Competitiveness Report 2014 - Helping Firms Grow — 11 September 2014, 22:59 CET
The 2014 edition focuses on the growth of firms, in particular on certain growth-enhancing measures and framework conditions affecting EU firms. These include the availability of different forms of funding – especially important if small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are to expand – as well as the importance of having an efficient and modern public administration in place. Other chapters examine how innovation and its impact on the growth of firms vary over the business cycle, and the extent to which SMEs are active outside their home markets; the forms of their international presence; the impact and drivers of SME internationalisation, and what can be done to increase their presence abroad.
This year's edition also contains a chapter on energy costs and energy efficiency, including an assessment of the importance of energy costs in relation to other costs, across manufacturing in general as well as for energy-intensive industries. The European Competitiveness Report, published annually since 1997, gives a quantitative assessment of the competitive performance of EU industries.
- Has the ERDF successfully supported the development of business incubators? - Special Report — 04 September 2014, 21:18 CET
In recent years, the EU has co-financed business incubator projects in the context of its cohesion policy with the support of the European Regional Development Fund. This is in line with the EU's political priorities, especially in view of the Lisbon and Europe 2020 strategies of supporting the launch and development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as they play an important role in the creation of growth and jobs. In this report, the European Court of Auditors assesses whether these business incubator projects were successful in supporting start-up SMEs.
- Sixth Report on Economic, Social and Territorial Cohesion — 23 July 2014, 22:32 CET
The European Commission's 6th Report on Economic, Social and Territorial Cohesion shows that EU Cohesion Policy is delivering on the growth goals of the Europe 2020 Strategy by creating jobs and reducing disparities across Europe. Looking ahead to 2014-2020, the report outlines how investments will be focused on key areas like energy efficiency, employment, social inclusion and SMEs to get the most of the investments to the benefit of citizens.
The Report analyses the state of cohesion of the Union and highlights the challenges faced by national, regional and local authorities in overcoming the impact of the financial and economic crisis. In particular it finds that Cohesion Policy has cushioned the dramatic decline of public investment, injecting much needed investment resources in many Member States and creating vital financial stability which serves to attract private investment.
EU Cohesion Policy investments from 2014-2020 will make more than €38 billion available to support the shift to a more environmentally-friendly economy, through investments for energy efficiency and renewables, while up to €33 billion will support Europe's SMEs to become more competitive.
- Mapping of National School Food Policies across the EU — 16 July 2014, 23:17 CET
With childhood obesity prevalence on the rise in many European countries, schools may serve as a protected environment for children to learn healthy diet and lifestyle habits. Policy makers, educators and researchers would benefit from a comprehensive overview of European school food policies. Mandatory standards are defined in 18 of the policies (53%), the remainder offering voluntary guidelines. Top 3 policy aims are to improve child nutrition (97%), teach healthy dietary/lifestyle habits (94%) and reduce/prevent obesity (88%). Variations mainly relate to the types of meals targeted (e.g. lunch, breakfast, snack, dinner); whether standards/recommendations are nutrient- and/or food-based; and if vending machines and the wider food environment (kiosks near schools, packed lunches from home, etc.) are considered. Conclusion: We provide an up-to-date overview of European school food policies. The next step will be to assess the need and feasibility for developing best practice guidelines for school food policies in Europe, bearing in mind cultural and structural differences between countries.