From Rome to Sibiu

12-04-2018

The purpose of this paper is to assess the follow-up and delivery by the European Council on the priorities that were set in the declaration adopted in Rome on 25 March 2017 on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome. The analysis shows that in the year since Rome, 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. The evidence so far suggests that the European Council, as well as the other EU institutions, have followed up on the pledges made in Rome, in an effort to boost the legitimacy of the EU, connect with a disaffected public, and combat Euroscepticism. The Leaders' Agenda, adopted by October 2017, made an important contribution to the Future of Europe debate and, furthermore, was a potentially far-reaching institutional innovation for the European Council. Under the Leaders' Agenda, discussions among the Heads of State or Government now attempt to resolve seemingly intractable policy disputes by means of a new working method. Not only has this helped to operationalise the Rome Declaration, it also seems to have consolidated the European Council's position at the centre of the EU policy-making and agenda-setting framework.

The purpose of this paper is to assess the follow-up and delivery by the European Council on the priorities that were set in the declaration adopted in Rome on 25 March 2017 on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome. The analysis shows that in the year since Rome, 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. The evidence so far suggests that the European Council, as well as the other EU institutions, have followed up on the pledges made in Rome, in an effort to boost the legitimacy of the EU, connect with a disaffected public, and combat Euroscepticism. The Leaders' Agenda, adopted by October 2017, made an important contribution to the Future of Europe debate and, furthermore, was a potentially far-reaching institutional innovation for the European Council. Under the Leaders' Agenda, discussions among the Heads of State or Government now attempt to resolve seemingly intractable policy disputes by means of a new working method. Not only has this helped to operationalise the Rome Declaration, it also seems to have consolidated the European Council's position at the centre of the EU policy-making and agenda-setting framework.