News from the IES

On Monday 28 November 2016, Florian Trauner speaks on the topic ‘Dublin is dead, long live Dublin - The struggle for paradigmatic change in EU asylum policy’ at the University of Vienna in the context of the lectures of the IPW (Institut für Politikwissenschaft).


In collaboration with computer engineers from Newcastle University (Australia), IES’ Professor Marie Lamensch developed a technology-based solution for collecting value added tax (VAT) on imports of goods that would allow States to remove the exemption threshold that currently applies on imports (for administrative reasons, ie. because the cost of processing all incoming parcels exceeds the expected tax revenue), but which, in a global and digital economy, results in distortions between local and offshore businesses (as imports become cheaper than domestic goods thanks to the VAT exemption).

On the eve of the annual world climate summit (Marrakesh, 7-18 November 2016), an IES Policy Forum on 20 October 2016 discussed the prospects of international climate policy. After the record-quick entry into force of the Paris Agreement concluded in December 2015 on 4 November 2016, the Marrakesh conference will also serve as the first meeting of the parties to that agreement. Chaired by IES professor Sebastian Oberthür, the Policy Forum featured presentations by Elina Bardram from the European Commission’s DG Climate Action and Stephan Singer, Climate Action Network International.

On 25 October, IES doctoral researcher Ferran Davesa offered a presentation on the preliminary results of his project "Political Participation into EU Policy-Making. Which Approach for Youth?". Davesa is part of the joint programme EDGE (Evaluating Democratic Governance in Europe) of the Political Science Department and the Institute for the European Studies (IES) of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB).

Migration experts from the IES played a major role in the organisation of the Political Sociology Network conference of the European Sociology Association held at the IES’ premises on 28-29 October. Entitled ‘(Dis-)locating Europe: conflicts, challenges and changes’, the conference gathered around 120 participants from different European countries and was organized by the IES in cooperation with the the Université libre de Bruxelles, the Université catholique de Louvain and the Université Saint-Louise-Bruxelles.

IES professor Sebastian Oberthür was part of a group of 4 researchers who provided written evidence to the UK House of Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee on the future of UK climate and energy policy. Among their main findings was that the UK has indeed played a strong role in the development of EU climate policy, without which the EU’s role to help broker global deals like the Paris Agreement would have been weaker. 

On 13 October 2016, the Institute for European Studies hosted a policy forum titled “The interface between EU competition law and regulation: challenges and new developments”. The objective of the discussion was to address the substantive and procedural developments as well as contentious aspects that surface in the context of the interrelationship between competition law and sector regulation.

On 19 October 2016, the IES together with Airbus Group, organised a policy forum, which explored the potential for sustainable alternative jet fuels to deliver emission reductions in the aviation sector. IES researcher Filip Sedefov introduced the topic and then gave the floor to three stakeholder representatives invited for the occasion. 

Institute for European Studies organized, in collaboration with the Centre for Literary and Intermedial Crossings the and Vesalius College at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the Institute for German Studies / Literary and Media Studies at the University of Duisburg-Essen,  an evening lecture with Prof. Michael Madison from the University of Pittsburgh on the theme of “copyright in the era of big data”. The lecture attracted a big crowd approaching 100 people, and invigorated a lively discussion: copyright may be facing unprecedented challenges in the era of Big Data.

On Thursday 1 December, the seminar on “A Science Diplomacy approach for Belgium?!” will bring together experts and practitioners with an interest in science, innovation, international cooperation and diplomacy with a view to discussing existing science diplomacy practices and approaches around the world, and to reflecting on a science diplomacy strategy for Belgium. This event is jointly organised by the Institute for European Studies (IES), the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO), the Department Economie, Wetenschap & Innovatie (EWI) and Wallonia-Brussels International (WBI). For further information and registration, please consult the following page. For more information on EL-CSID project click here.