« Week of October 14, 2019 »
Start: 16 Oct 2019 15:00
End: 16 Oct 2019 17:15

15 years ago, in 2004, the European Union (EU) enlarged to eight Central and Eastern European states as well as to Malta and Cyprus. This event was a milestone in the history of the European integration project. The widespread feeling was that Europe would again be ‘reunited’. Indeed, the Eastern enlargement has contributed to substantially closer socio-economic ties between Eastern and Western Europe. In the educational sector, for instance, Eastern Europeans now have a share of roughly 20 percent of all Erasmus students coming to the VUB. Other Belgian universities have comparable numbers. Yet, 15 years after the enlargement, the relationship has also become more complicated. Some Eastern and Western member states struggle to overcome their differences on issues such as how to deal with asylum seekers in the EU and to guarantee the independence of democratic watchdogs including courts and media. This panel therefore asks: 15 years after the Eastern enlargement, are we growing together or moving apart?

Start: 18 Oct 2019 10:45
End: 18 Oct 2019 17:00

On October 18, the EDGE Programme invites you to a full day of presentations, discussions and conversations on long-term challenges to democracy. The agenda includes many activities to foster research creativity and intellectual exchange, from an academic speed-dating to the launch of the newly published EDGE book on political representation. You will also be able to join a roundtable discussion on the future challenges of democracy and a closing speech on “What Future for Parliamentary Politics and Democratic Engagement?”, by Cristina Leston-Bandeira (University of Leeds).

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