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Guide to EU Funding 2014-2020

Written by Vasilis Margaras, Finding the appropriate funding sources for a local authority, a public entity, a company or a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) can be a major problem. Information is scattered across many different sources and is often confusing and outdated. The EPRS ‘Guide to EU Funding 2014-2020’ is a basic introduction to EU funding … Continue reading

Ethical and social challenges of agricultural technologies

Written by Mihalis Kritikos with James Tarlton, ‘We shouldn’t hinder technological development, but we should … protect our citizens and our natural resources” is how Marijana Petir (EPP, Croatia), a member of the European Parliament’s STOA (Science and Technology Options Assessment) Panel, opened the ‘ethical and social challenges of agricultural technologies – issues for decision-makers’, … Continue reading

How will evolving global shifts impact us in 2017?

Written by Naja Bentzen, Following 2016, a year of shifts and shocks, there is little doubt that 2017 holds potential for much uncertainty. A new EPRS publication, Ten issues to watch in 2017, explores a number of issues – internal and external security, the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU (Brexit), the new United States … Continue reading

CETA: Final vote in the plenary session

Written by Krisztina Binder and Wilhelm Schöllmann, The EU-Canada negotiations on a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) began in May 2009 and were concluded in September 2014. For the EU, CETA represents the first comprehensive economic agreement with a highly industrialised Western economy. What’s in the text? The agreement’s overall aim is to increase flows of … Continue reading

Multilingualism in the digital age: The need for a ‘European language programme’

Written by Zsolt G. Pataki with Bianca A. Schranz, The first STOA (Science and Technology Options Assessment) workshop in 2017, held on 10 January in the European Parliament, and titled ‘Language equality in the digital age – towards a human language project’, attracted many experts and six Members, all actively involved in the discussion. The workshop … Continue reading

International Free Trade on the agenda – European Parliament Plenary Session February II

Written by Clare Ferguson, EU relations with Canada top the bill this session, with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressing the European Parliament on Thursday, following the previous day’s debate on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between the EU and Canada, known as CETA, finally signed in October 2016. Except for a few sensitive agricultural products, … Continue reading

What measures is the EU taking to combat terrorism?

Following various terrorist attacks in Europe, citizens write to the European Parliament expressing their deepest rejection of these acts of terrorism. Citizens also ask the EU institutions to adopt new measures to combat and prevent these crimes. Many European countries have been affected by terrorism in one form or another. Heinous terrorist attacks have demonstrated … Continue reading

The future of robotics: find out yourself (animated infographic)

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, What are cyber-physical systems? The integration of Cyber-physical systems (CPS) into society promises many benefits, including increasing the efficiency and sustainability of many of our current practices, and creating new markets and growth. These promises include automated cars, mass-customisation of products, and smart technological aids for disabled … Continue reading

Have your say on Robotics and Artificial Intelligence!

Written by Tatjana Evas, Are you worried about robots taking over your job? Do you have views on how artificial intelligence could help your company become more profitable? Today the European Parliament asks what the public thinks of the legal situation regarding robots as it launches a public consultation on robotics and artificial intelligence. The … Continue reading

4 February: World Cancer Day

Written by Nicole Scholz, World Cancer Day is a global awareness-raising initiative of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), supported by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The initiative aims to spread the word about cancer and prod governments and individuals into action, with a view … Continue reading

Adoption, Erasmus, FGM and … fish. European Parliament Plenary Session February I

Written by Clare Ferguson with Jack Meredith, Adopting a child is a major step for anyone, involving many checks and official procedures. Under the present system, however, there is no guaranteed EU-wide recognition of domestic adoptions in other Member States (the Hague Convention only recognises adoptions where the child lived in a different state). This … Continue reading

Renewal of the authorisation of the use of the herbicide substance glyphosate

Many citizens want to know what is the European Parliament’s position on the renewal of the authorisation of the use of glyphosate. On November 2015, the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA) declared that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans and the evidence does not support classification with regard to its … Continue reading

Making difficult decisions in agriculture: STOA Workshop

Written by Mihalis Kritikos and Nera Kuljanic, Scientists have new technological answers to the twin challenges of limiting emissions and feeding a growing population which is simultaneously shrinking the space left for cultivation. However, these answers in turn pose their own ethical and risk management questions. Societal actors and a wide range of stakeholders have … Continue reading

With a unified approach, the EU could boost its global role – EPRS conference

Written by Marcin Grajewski, Economic decisions taken at inter- and supranational level have recently come under fire from populists and protectionists. However, with better coordination between Member States, the European Union could play a stronger role in representing the needs of its citizens in global economic governance. Concerted pressure from EU and euro area countries … Continue reading

Plastic bags: EU’s response to reducing consumption

Citizens want to know what the EU is doing to reduce the consumption of plastic bags given the negative impact on marine wildlife and the environment. In the EU, plastic carrier bags are considered as packaging under Directive 94/62/EC. The use of plastic carrier bags result in littering and an inefficient use of resources. Moreover, … Continue reading

A new President for the European Parliament – January EP Plenary Session

Written by Clare Ferguson, The agenda this session is dominated by the election of the new President of the European Parliament, with time allowed on Tuesday for multiple rounds of voting. Candidates wishing to stand have to have their name put forward before Monday evening, when the January Parliamentary session opens with an announcement of … Continue reading

STOA Workshop ‘Can technology help remove language barriers in Europe?’

Workshop hashtag: #LanguageTech STOA website & registration Live-streaming  Written by Zsolt G. Pataki with Bianca A. Schranz Multilingualism is an essential feature of the European Union and respect of linguistic diversity one of its fundamental values: there are 24 official languages and more than 60 regional and minority languages. However, persisting or increasing language barriers are … Continue reading

12 graphs: Article 12 of the Vienna Convention

Written by Clare Ferguson, The European Union conducts and concludes trade agreements with partners on every continent, and is modernising some of the older agreements, dating back as far as the 1970s, to reflect the EU’s new trade competences acquired with the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty. Article 12 of the Vienna Convention … Continue reading

12 graphs: Eleven sectors of ‘data users’

Written by Clare Ferguson, In 2016 we all became more aware of the enormous quantities of data we generate in our daily working and private lives, and the uses to which this data can be put. Analysis of ‘big data’ generated by economic and social activities can be used to improve processes or predict human … Continue reading

12 graphs: Ten branches of Shia Islam

Written by Clare Ferguson, Much has been said, and misrepresented, about the world’s Muslim population, on both sides of the Atlantic this year. While increasing ethnic and religious diversity cannot be ignored, including the possibility that this might prompt increasing social division, future society and governance in the EU must find a way to tackle … Continue reading

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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