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Transnational challenges

There is a growing overlap between the EU’s internal and external security problems. Terrorism, organised crime and unregulated migration not only pose a threat to European internal security, but also have a serious impact on the stability of Europe’s immediate neighbourhood. Very often, they find their roots in conflicts and instability further abroad in Africa or Asia.

For some time, the European Union has been active in international debates on the governance of these challenges, and has created new policy instruments of its own. Already in the early 1990s, the EU successfully linked its home-affairs priorities with its Common Foreign and Security Policy. The 2015 migration crisis showed the limits of that approach, and has sparked a new wave of reforms.


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    14March 2014

    Following the proposal to prepare an EU Cyber Defence Policy Framework at last December's European Council, this Brief seeks to explore how the EU can improve its cyber-defence capabilities and thereby better protect its critical infrastructure. What is there, for example, to be learned from international partners in this ‘greenfield’ domain?

  • 13March 2014

    To stimulate the debate on cyber capacity building and the impact it has on social and economic development worldwide, the EUISS has hosted a major conference in Paris with participants coming from international and regional organisations, governments, the private sector, and civil society.

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    28February 2014

    Sub-Saharan Africa is both blessed with immense energy resources and challenged by desperate energy poverty. This Brief explains how, as Europe diversifies its energy suppliers and seeks improved energy security, a focus on better energy governance and improved energy sustainability in Africa can help manage this contradiction.

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    14February 2014
    With contributions from

    This report undertakes an appraisal of global energy trends and lays out priorities for the EU to improve its energy security through action in the international arena. The shale gas revolution in the US, the nuclear meltdown in Japan, the rising use of coal in emerging economies and the shift of economic gravity to the Asia-Pacific have all complicated energy policy-making in Europe.

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    18December 2013

    Following the Climate Change Conference held in Warsaw last month, this alert examines the difficult balancing act facing the EU as it struggles to reduce emissions in a manner that protects both its economy and the environment.

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    06December 2013

    This brief explores the impact on US foreign policy of the so-called ‘shale revolution’. With an ever-decreasing dependence on foreign energy producers, is the US on course to become independent from world energy markets? What impact will this have on the (often politically unstable) regions upon which the US has hitherto relied and, perhaps more unsettlingly for Europeans, on the transatlantic partnership?

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    29November 2013

    Making use of all available resources is of paramount importance to mitigate the social and economic costs of humanitarian and natural disasters. This alert examines how information and communication technologies, coupled with crowd-sourcing – the practice of obtaining information, ideas and services from large (often online) groups of people – are increasingly proving to be valuable tools in tackling some of the key challenges in such situations.

  • 19November 2013

    A closed expert meeting was held on 19 November 2013 in Brussels as part of the EUISS Task Force’s activities on cyber security. Representatives from EU institutions, international organisations, research institutes as well as the private sector debated issues such as capacity building, the digital economy and cybercrime.

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    08November 2013

    With volatility and uncertainty set to define global energy markets in the coming decade, well-designed energy policies will ensure that EU achieves the energy security it desires. How can this be achieved? And is it possible to effectively pursue energy security whilst taking into account environmental concerns – notably those related to climate change?

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    24September 2013

    Analysing recent unexpected developments in the international reaction to the chemical weapons attacks in Syria, this brief examines how the new emphasis on disarmament may actually open up the prospect of a negotiated end to the conflict.