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Economic and Social Policies

This category contains 831 posts

Adapting to new digital realities: Main issues and policy responses

Digital technologies have changed the way we live and transformed the world around us at unprecedented speed. They have affected all important aspects of life, both at work and at home, and have influenced almost everything from human relations to the economy, to the extent that access to the internet has now become a basic human right recognised by the United Nations. Continue reading

Regulating online TV and radio broadcasting [EU Legislation in Progress]

The provision of television and radio broadcasting services over the internet is a fast-developing phenomenon in the European Union. The European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation to promote the cross-border provision of online services ancillary to broadcasts and facilitate digital retransmissions of TV and radio programmes originating in other Member States in September 2016. Continue reading

From Rome to Sibiu

Analysis shows that in the year since the Rome Declaration, and a year before the special summit on the Future of Europe debate, due to take place in the Romanian city of Sibiu on 9 May 2019, substantive progress has been made regarding the debate itself and implementation of the policy priorities identified in the Bratislava Declaration/Roadmap and the Rome Declaration. Continue reading

Maglev transportation [Science and Technology Podcast]

Magnetic levitation-based transport might soon enter our lives, providing faster, safer and more energy-efficient journeys. As longer distances can be covered faster and more cleanly, could they change the way in which we choose where to live? Continue reading

An EU intellectual property policy to boost innovation

Intellectual property (IP) lies at the heart of innovation and competitiveness around the world as well as in the European Union, and intellectual property rights (IPRs) are protected mainly through patents, trade marks and copyright. IPRs enable individuals and companies to earn recognition and/or financial benefit from what they invent or create. By striking the right balance between innovators and public interest, IP aims to foster an environment in which creativity and innovation can flourish. Continue reading

A common EU approach to liability rules and insurance for connected and autonomous vehicles

Two key trends are shaping the future of personal mobility: first, a shift from human (driver-driven) to machine (driverless-supercomputer driven) control of vehicles and second, a shift from individual to shared ownership of vehicles. Continue reading

Boosting cooperation on health technology assessment [EU Legislation in Progress]

The European Commission has proposed a regulation on health technology assessment (HTA). HTA is a research-based tool that supports decision-making in healthcare by assessing the added value of a given health technology compared to others. Continue reading

A new directive on work-life balance [EU Legislation in Progress][Policy podcast]

This proposed directive (complemented with non-legislative measures) should lead to the repeal of the existing Framework Agreement on Parental Leave, made binding by Council Directive 2010/18/EU (the Parental Leave Directive). Continue reading

What if all technologies were inherently social? [Science and Technology Podcast]

How technology has shaped society and how future technologies might affect it in the years to come are subjects for frequent debate. It can be tempting in this context to think of technologies as neutral ‘things’ that can be used for good or bad depending on the user’s intentions and skills. Continue reading

The collaborative economy and taxation: Taxing the value created in the collaborative economy

A relatively recent phenomenon, the collaborative economy has become mainstream in a decade in some areas of activities, such as car-sharing or short-term lets. Although it is now a well-known term – with alternative names from the ‘sharing’ to ‘gig’ to ‘peer‑to‑peer’ economy – it remains difficult to grasp precisely, beyond the central feature that potential consumers and providers are connected via a digital platform that matches demand and supply, providing cheap access to information on a very large scale. Continue reading

Palm oil: economic and environmental impacts

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world’s most widely used vegetable oil. However, its production comes at a heavy environmental cost, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia, the two main producers. Efforts to make its production more sustainable still have a long way to go. Continue reading

The Platform Economy [What Think Tanks are thinking]

The digital revolution is reshaping the world, changing people’s habits in communication, work, leisure and politics. A major part of this revolution is the expansion of the economy based on digital platforms that match demand and supply for labour without an intermediation of traditional corporations. Continue reading

Strengthening market surveillance of harmonised industrial products [EU Legislation in Progress]

Harmonised products represent 69 % of the overall value of industrial products in the internal market. However, a significant part of these products does not comply with harmonised EU rules. Continue reading

European high-performance computing joint undertaking [EU Legislation in Progress]

Following a declaration made by seven EU Member States in March 2017, the European Commission adopted a proposal to establish a joint undertaking for high-performance computing (HPC) under Article 187 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) on 11 January 2018. Continue reading

Guarantee Fund for External Action and EIB external lending mandate [EU Legislation in Progress]

In response to a sharp increase in the number of people trying to migrate to Europe illegally, and as part of the mid-term review of the European Investment Bank’s external lending mandate (ELM), the Commission has proposed an external investment plan to tackle the root causes of migration from countries neighbouring the European Union, consisting of a European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD) and quantitative and qualitative changes to the ELM. Continue reading

CO2 standards for new cars and vans [EU Legislation in Progress]

In November 2017, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on reducing CO2 emissions from new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles (vans). The proposed measures and targets are aligned with the 2030 climate and energy framework and with the energy union strategy, which envisages a reduction in transport emissions and energy consumption. Continue reading

Review of the Clean Vehicles Directive [EU Legislation in Progress]

In November 2017, the European Commission proposed a revision of Directive 2009/33/EC on the promotion of clean and energy-efficient road transport vehicles (the Clean Vehicles Directive), after an evaluation showed that the directive had yielded limited results, for instance by not encouraging a more significant uptake of clean vehicles in the market overall. Continue reading

What if all our meat were grown in a lab? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Livestock production has an enormous environmental impact. The total land used for keeping animals and growing crops for their consumption amounts to around 30 % of the world’s ice-free land surface, and the livestock supply chain is responsible for about 14.5 % of global human-made greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. Continue reading

Understanding nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles

Nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles need to be understood if the risks and challenges they entail are to be grasped. This understanding starts with two processes discovered in the last century – nuclear fission and nuclear fusion – that have the ability to release a significant quantity of energy from a very limited amount of matter. Continue reading

Goods vehicles hired without drivers [EU Legislation in Progress]

EU rules on the use of goods vehicles hired without drivers have been in operation for over 25 years without change and need to be reviewed to correspond to current and future needs in the transport sector. 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