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Members' Research Service

Members' Research Service has written 1103 posts for European Parliamentary Research Service Blog

Western Balkans in the spotlight in 2018

With positive messages and increased attention coming from the EU, 2017 seems to have ended on a high note for the Western Balkans. 2018 starts with the region being high on the agenda of Bulgaria’s EU Council Presidency, and promises a favourable context for advancing its EU bids. For this to happen, however, the six WB countries need to show results on the core EU-related reforms. Continue reading

Economic and Budgetary Outlook for the European Union 2018

In 2017, the EU and euro-area economies continued their moderate growth (slightly over 2 %) in a context of global improvement (3.5 %) underpinned by a strong rebound in world trade, continuing growth in China and a return to growth in countries such as Brazil and Russia. Continue reading

European Parliament Plenary Session, January 2018

Written by Clare Ferguson, Twin key debates are scheduled on Parliament’s agenda on Wednesday morning, with the appearance of no less than two Prime Ministers. Bulgarian Prime Minister, Boyko Borissov, will present the programme of activities of the Bulgarian Presidency, followed by a debate with the Prime Minister of Ireland, Leo Varadkar, on the future … Continue reading

EU efforts on counter-terrorism – Capacity-building in third countries [Policy podcast]

In the European Union (EU), responsibility for counter-terrorism lies primarily with Member States. However, the role of the EU itself in counter-terrorism has grown significantly in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks that have hit Europe in the post-‘9/11’ era. Continue reading

Understanding artificial intelligence [Policy podcast]

Artificial intelligence (AI) systems already permeate daily life: they drive cars, decide on mortgage applications, translate texts, recognise faces on social networks, identify spam emails, create artworks, play games, and intervene in conflict zones. Continue reading

Future financing of the Union [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The EU has a modest fiscal capacity in the form of an annual budget, whose size and structure are largely predetermined by a Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). The current MFF covers the 2014-2020 period and amounts to €1.09 trillion, or roughly 1 % of EU GDP. Continue reading

North Korea [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

One of the biggest concerns internationally is that 2018 could see the long-standing North Korean crisis develop into a larger-scale conflict, potentially affecting not only eastern Asia, but also a large variety of players across the globe. Continue reading

European elections [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The next European elections – for the ninth elected term – will be held in May/June 2019. But the European Parliament elections struggle to be truly ‘European’ rather than ‘national’ in both form and substance. Continue reading

Future of the euro area [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

The euro area twice came under immense pressure in recent years: in 2007, when the US financial crisis spilled over to Europe, and then, when the European sovereign debt crisis broke out, peaking in 2010-2012. The latter clearly revealed weaknesses in the original architecture of economic and monetary union (EMU). Continue reading

Migration [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

Although the record-high migratory flows to the EU witnessed during 2015 and 2016 had subsided by the end of 2017, sea arrivals remained at significant levels. In 2018 and in the years to come, considering the global repercussions of international and internal conflicts, climate change and the growing disparities between the EU and third countries, it is unlikely that migratory pressure will decrease. Continue reading

Youth empowerment [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

According to Eurostat data, there are currently 88.6 million young Europeans between 15 and 29 years old. They constitute 17.4 % of the total population, a slow but steady decline from 19.6 % (96.6 million) in 2006. Continue reading

Rising inequalities [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

Inequalities are a deep-rooted and persistent problem in the EU and globally. While across the EU the Gini-co-efficient of equivalised disposable income has been somewhat stagnant both for individual Member States and for the EU-28 as a whole, there are major territorial and developmental differences. Continue reading

Brexit / United Kingdom withdrawal from the EU [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

On 29 March 2017, the UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, notified the European Council of the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU, thereby triggering a two-year deadline to reach a withdrawal agreement. Continue reading

Disinformation and cybersecurity [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

In 2017, Russian influence campaigns orchestrated via US-based social media continued to arouse deep anxiety in Western democracies. The scope of the Kremlin’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election campaign was steadily revealed throughout 2017. Continue reading

Terrorism [Ten issues to watch in 2018]

In recent years, terrorism has been an issue of major concern that has dominated public debates across the EU. The deadly attacks that took place in several EU Member States in 2017 attest to the ongoing reality of the threat, despite a massive security response. Continue reading

ENISA and a new cybersecurity act [EU Legislation in Progress]

On 13 September 2017 the Commission adopted a cybersecurity package with new initiatives to further improve EU cyber resilience, deterrence and defence. Continue reading

Celebrating European cultural heritage in 2018

A Commission proposal paving the way to the designation of 2018 as the European Year of Cultural Heritage was adopted by the European Parliament in plenary in April, and subsequently by the Council. Continue reading

The EU and counter-terrorism [Topical Digest]

This Topical Digest offers a sample of recent publications and graphics, produced by the European Parliamentary Research Service, on developments in EU security and counter-terrorism policies. Continue reading

European Development Days 2017 [Topical Digest]

The European Parliament is particularly concerned that poverty eradication stays at the centre of EU development policy, while addressing the root causes of irregular migration. EPRS, Parliament’s in-house think-tank, has dedicated a number of papers on the topic. Continue reading

EU sport policy and issues [Topical Digest]

Sport has a significant impact on the European Union’s economy and society, and its importance is ever growing. It is a field in which the EU’s responsibilities are relatively new. In the 2014-2020 period, a specific budget line is for the first time available under the Erasmus+ programme to support projects and networks in the area of sport. Continue reading

High Level Conferences
EU Legislation in Progress
Topical Digests
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The content of all documents (and articles) contained in this blog is the sole responsibility of the author and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily represent the official position of the European Parliament. It is addressed to the Members and staff of the EP for their parliamentary work. Reproduction and translation for non-commercial purposes are authorised, provided the source is acknowledged and the European Parliament is given prior notice and sent a copy. Copyright © European Union, 2014. All rights reserved