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Members' Research Service

Members' Research Service has written 1653 posts for European Parliamentary Research Service Blog

International Day of Peace: EU contribution to peace in the world

On 21 September, we celebrate ‘International Peace Day’, declared by the General Assembly of the United Nations. This is an important date for everyone, but especially for the European Union, which from its basis as a project of perpetual peace among its members, has become one of the main promoters of peace in the world. Continue reading

Plenary round-up – Strasbourg, September 2019

Highlights of the September plenary session included statements and debates on the preparation for the Climate Action Summit and the Sustainable Development Goals Summit in New York, on the importance of European remembrance for the future of Europe, and on the implementation of anti-money laundering legislation. Continue reading

EU guidelines on ethics in artificial intelligence: Context and implementation

The discussion around artificial intelligence (AI) technologies and their impact on society is increasingly focused on the question of whether AI should be regulated. Following the call from the European Parliament to update and complement the existing Union legal framework with guiding ethical principles, the EU has carved out a ‘human-centric’ approach to AI that is respectful of European values and principles. Continue reading

Consumers and repair of products

Repairing broken or damaged products can save consumers money by helping them postpone making replacement purchases, while also bringing benefits to the environment through lower waste production and use of resources. Continue reading

Women in foreign affairs and international security: Contours of a timely debate

The debate on the participation and role of women in foreign affairs and international security is a timely and relevant one, and is being raised with increasing frequency at both national and international levels. Continue reading

European Parliament Plenary Session – September 2019

Parliament opens its doors for the first plenary session after the summer on Monday evening, with an agenda focused on climate issues and the EU budget. Continue reading

Erasmus+: More than just mobility

Erasmus+ is the EU’s single integrated education programme for improving young people’s skills and employability, and currently covers the 2014-2020 period. It also promotes the modernisation of education and training in the EU Member States, by facilitating transnational contacts amongst different players and across different sectors. Erasmus+ brings together the previous EU programmes in education, training and youth, and also includes sports. Continue reading

The trade pillar of the EU-Mercosur Association Agreement [International Agreements in Progress]

On 28 June 2019, the European Union (EU) and the four founding members of Mercosur (the ‘Southern Common Market’) – Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – reached an ‘agreement in principle’ on a free trade agreement (FTA) as part of a wider association agreement (AA). Continue reading

State of the Union [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The State of the Union addresses of the President of the European Commission are not prescribed by the EU Treaties. Rather, they were instigated with the 2010 Framework Agreement between the European Parliament and the European Commission as part of the annual political and legislative programming of the Union. Continue reading

Privacy and personal data protection [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

Personal data is processed – often automatically – for many purposes to the benefit of society and individuals; at the same time, its use (or the risk of its misuse) raises concerns for individual’s rights, including privacy and data protection, which are enshrined in both primary and secondary EU law. Continue reading

Parliamentary hearings of the Commissioners-designate and approval of the College of Commissioners (investiture) [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The European Parliament’s power to dismiss the Commission by means of a motion of censure goes back to its very inception (1951). However, it was not until the Maastricht Treaty (1992) that the Parliament acquired a role in the investiture procedure too, by gaining the power to approve (and, therefore, also to reject) the College of Commissioners before it took office. Continue reading

Pushing for an adequate response to online disinformation [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The visibility of disinformation as a tool to undermine democracies increased in the context of Russia’s hybrid war against Ukraine. It gained notoriety as a global challenge during the the United States presidential election campaign in 2016, and in the context of the UK referendum on EU membership the same year. Continue reading

Democracy support for Ukraine [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

Ukraine is a key example of how the European Parliament has increased its ‘soft’, diplomatic power. As explained below, before and after the Maidan revolution in 2013-2014, which was sparked by the decision by the then President, Viktor Yanukovich, not to sign an Association Agreement with the European Union, the European Parliament has played an increasingly visible role in relation to democracy support. Continue reading

Review and revision of the 2014-2020 multiannual financial framework [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

Erasmus+ is the European Union’s programme dedicated to education, training, youth and sport. It is one of the best-known EU initiatives, but many think Erasmus+ is only for university students who go to study for a few months in another European university. Continue reading

An EU budget focused on results [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The principles of sound financial management, regularity and legality of budget implementation have been present in the EU legal and financial system since the earliest days of the European Communities. Continue reading

More EU funding to fight unemployment: Youth Employment Initiative [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The European Parliament has traditionally been very supportive of EU funding for employment-related programmes. On different occasions, it has expressed concerns about the level of unemployment among young people, calling for the European youth strategy and concrete actions, endowed with adequate financial resources. Continue reading

Promoting peace and stability in the world: the Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace (IcSP) [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

Development cooperation has been a cornerstone of the EU’s relations with the outside world, contributing to the objectives of EU external action, alongside foreign, security and trade policies. Continue reading

Passenger name records (PNR) for the prevention of terrorist offences and serious crime [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

In April 2016, after five years of legislative work and lengthy negotiations, the co-legislators adopted the Directive on the use of passenger name record (PNR) data for the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of terrorist offences and serious crime. Continue reading

Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between EU and Canada [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between the EU and Canada entered into force on a provisional basis on 21 September 2017, and most of the agreement now applies. The ratification process is still ongoing at the Member State level. Continue reading

Telecoms reform: a new European Electronic Communications Code [European Parliament impact 2014-2019]

The last overhaul of EU telecommunications rules took place in 2009, which is a very long time ago in a modern digital world that is increasingly reliant on rapid technological development. Given the urgent need to meaningfully adapt the framework so that European businesses can compete globally and citizens have stronger rights and are better protected in the virtual world, in September 2016 the European Commission proposed the directive establishing the new European Electronic Communications Code (EECC). Continue reading

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