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The Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is a constitutive part of EU foreign policy. Through its nearly 30 military operations and civilian missions over the last decade, the EU has contributed to regional and global stability with a variety of activities.
With the signing of the Lisbon Treaty in 2010 and its subsequent implementation, the European Union has gradually assembled the constituent elements of a sui generis ‘foreign policy’, bringing together various competencies, instruments and resources that were hitherto spread across different institutions and bodies.
The waning distinction between internal and external security challenges is increasingly shaping the EU’s role and broadening its tasks. Transnational challenges – terrorism, organised crime or proliferation of weapons of mass destruction – not only pose a threat to European internal security, but also have a serious impact on the stability of Europe’s immediate neighbourhood.
There are many ways to think about the future – but some are more productive than others. Horoscopes, prophecies and ancient dream interpretations, for instance, are not exactly useful: whereas horoscopes and dreams are too vague, prophecies are too doomsday-like to give a clear idea of what can be done to shape the future. This is what foresight is really about: choice, decision and action – and not prediction, as is often assumed.