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The Visegrad Group and the rule of law [What Think Tanks are thinking]

08-05-2018

Political developments in the Visegrád Group countries have raised concern over the commitment of some of their leaders and senior politicians to European Union values, notably the rule of law. The Visegrád Group is an informal alliance of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, all of which joined the EU in 2004. Criticism by EU officials and some other Union governments centres on Hungary and Poland, where governments have implemented a number of controversial reforms, notably of the ...

Political developments in the Visegrád Group countries have raised concern over the commitment of some of their leaders and senior politicians to European Union values, notably the rule of law. The Visegrád Group is an informal alliance of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, all of which joined the EU in 2004. Criticism by EU officials and some other Union governments centres on Hungary and Poland, where governments have implemented a number of controversial reforms, notably of the judiciary. In December 2017, the European Commission triggered the first phase of Article 7 of the Treaty on European Union, which can ultimately deprive a country found guilty of violating EU values of voting rights. In addition, a European Parliament draft report notes a deterioration of the rule of law in Hungary, where Prime Minister Viktor Orbán won a third term in office in the country’s recent general election. This note offers links to recent commentaries, studies and reports from major international think tanks on the Visegrád Group, its internal relations and its role within the EU, with the focus on the rule of law debate.

Social and Employment Policies in the Czech Republic

16-04-2018

This paper describing and analysing recent developments in employment and social policies in the Czech Republic was compiled in response to the request by the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) in view of its delegation visit to Austria in early May 2018.

This paper describing and analysing recent developments in employment and social policies in the Czech Republic was compiled in response to the request by the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) in view of its delegation visit to Austria in early May 2018.

Awtur estern

Inga Pavlovaite, Jakub Caisl, Dora Vajai

The EU and the Aarhus Convention: Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters

17-06-2016

This briefing, commissioned by the Policy Department on Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs for the PETI committee, focuses on the Aarhus Convention, applicable to the EU and to all Member States. The Convention provides for rights to the public to access to information, participation in decision-making and access to justice in environmental matters. The Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee has found several EU Member States as well as the EU itself non-compliant with the Convention. Currently ...

This briefing, commissioned by the Policy Department on Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs for the PETI committee, focuses on the Aarhus Convention, applicable to the EU and to all Member States. The Convention provides for rights to the public to access to information, participation in decision-making and access to justice in environmental matters. The Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee has found several EU Member States as well as the EU itself non-compliant with the Convention. Currently eight EU Member States and the EU are on the list of non-compliant Parties, decided by the Meeting of Parties when endorsing Committee findings. The Committee follows up and reports on whether these Parties are taking sufficient measures to get in compliance. Adequate implementation by EU legislation, monitoring by the Commission and jurisprudence by the EU judiciary are important for effective enjoyment of the Aarhus Convention rights by the public throughout the EU.

Awtur estern

Jonas Ebbesson (Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee)

Tailor-Made Support for SMEs towards Effective Implementation of the EU’s Trade and Investment Strategy

02-05-2016

A Workshop on Tailor-made support for SMEs towards effective implementation of the EU's trade and investment strategy took place in the European Parliament on 17 February 2016. Professor Blackburn gave an analysis on SME internationalisation and policy interventions, and representatives of SMEs shared their experiences in this field.

A Workshop on Tailor-made support for SMEs towards effective implementation of the EU's trade and investment strategy took place in the European Parliament on 17 February 2016. Professor Blackburn gave an analysis on SME internationalisation and policy interventions, and representatives of SMEs shared their experiences in this field.

Awtur estern

Robert BLACKBURN

Women’s Entrepreneurship: Closing the Gender Gap in Access to Financial and Other Services and in Social Entrepreneurship

15-06-2015

This study explores differences between men and women entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs. It explores the barriers and discriminatory effects that hinder women’s entrepreneurship, including access to finance in the European Union. The study includes four case studies covering the situation in the Czech Republic, Italy, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

This study explores differences between men and women entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs. It explores the barriers and discriminatory effects that hinder women’s entrepreneurship, including access to finance in the European Union. The study includes four case studies covering the situation in the Czech Republic, Italy, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

Awtur estern

Katie McCracken, Sergio Marquez, Dr. Caleb Kwong, Professor Ute Stephan, Aston Business School, Adriana Castagnoli and Marie Dlouhá

The EU Strategy for the Danube Region

21-05-2015

Responding to the objective of achieving territorial cohesion, the macro-regional approach promoted by the European Union has gained momentum since 2009 and has been put into practice, first in the Baltic Sea Region and subsequently in the Danube River Basin and the Adriatic-Ionian Region through the implementation of strategies targeted at each of these areas, the Danube Region Strategy being one such example. Now that these first macro-regional strategies have been in operation for a few years, ...

Responding to the objective of achieving territorial cohesion, the macro-regional approach promoted by the European Union has gained momentum since 2009 and has been put into practice, first in the Baltic Sea Region and subsequently in the Danube River Basin and the Adriatic-Ionian Region through the implementation of strategies targeted at each of these areas, the Danube Region Strategy being one such example. Now that these first macro-regional strategies have been in operation for a few years, efforts have been made to draw initial lessons from them by assessing their results, the added value of the concept, and the suitability of the governance model applied. Reports from the European Commission, while highlighting the strategies' impact in terms of projects, coordination and integration, promotion of multi-level governance and territorial cohesion, underline the need for stronger political backing, commitment and leadership from the participating countries and regions. Stakeholders have called for a more streamlined governance structure, criticised the limited involvement of civil society organisations, local and regional actors in planning and decision-making processes, and pointed to capacity shortcomings impeding their participation. The question of capacities and resources is of critical importance. As macro-regional strategies do not bring additional EU funding, the participating countries or regions are expected to do more with what is available to address the challenges and opportunities requiring their cooperation. Putting this principle into practice is not a smooth process. This is especially true for the Danube macro-region, which is very diverse in membership. It covers 14 countries whose development levels and status in relation to the European Union (including their access to EU funding as a result of the latter) are not the same. The wide disparities between the partners have a significant impact on the operation of the strategy.

The Policy on Gender Equality in the Czech Republic

04-05-2015

Upon request by the FEMM Committee, this report provides an overview of the existing gender-equality legislation and policies in the Czech Republic, focussing on the recent developments and achievements. It discusses gender equality in employment, reconciliation of work and family life, presence of women in decision-making positions, recent measures to fight violence against women, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. The Czech Republic is still far from reaching real equality between men ...

Upon request by the FEMM Committee, this report provides an overview of the existing gender-equality legislation and policies in the Czech Republic, focussing on the recent developments and achievements. It discusses gender equality in employment, reconciliation of work and family life, presence of women in decision-making positions, recent measures to fight violence against women, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. The Czech Republic is still far from reaching real equality between men and women, in spite of a quite satisfactory level of implementation of EU legislation. In practice and daily life, the country has still a long way to go.

Country-Specific Recommendations - Scorecard for 2013: How far are EU Member States meeting their European Council commitments?

03-11-2014

This study provides an evaluation of the implementation of the 2013 Country-Specific Recommendations (CSRs) adopted by the EU Council of Finance Ministers, after endorsement by the European Council. CSRs relate to four broad policy areas: public finances, the financial sector, structural reforms, and employment and social policies. The text focuses on 14 EU Member States for which an IMF Country Report and/or an OECD Economic Survey have already been published in 2014. EU Member States, which were ...

This study provides an evaluation of the implementation of the 2013 Country-Specific Recommendations (CSRs) adopted by the EU Council of Finance Ministers, after endorsement by the European Council. CSRs relate to four broad policy areas: public finances, the financial sector, structural reforms, and employment and social policies. The text focuses on 14 EU Member States for which an IMF Country Report and/or an OECD Economic Survey have already been published in 2014. EU Member States, which were under an Economic Adjustment Programme – namely, Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Cyprus - are not covered by this analysis, as the Commission did not issue any CSRs for them in 2013. The interim analysis contained in this study suggests that implementation of CSRs by EU Member States continued to lose momentum last year. Only 12 per cent of the CSRs were fully addressed in 2013, compared to an average of 18 per cent in 2011-12. Conversely, the rate of 'no implementation' rose to 50 per cent, from 43 per cent in 2011-12.

Fokus fuq: Edukazzjoni Doppja: soluzzjoni għall-problemi attwali?

15-10-2014

L-esperjenza tax-xogħol hi ferm apprezzata mill-azjendi, u n-nuqqas ta' esperjenza għalhekk tikkostitwixxi ostaklu ewlieni għal dawk li qed ifittxu x-xogħol għall-ewwel darba. Ħafna żgħażagħ jinqabdu f'ċirku vizzjuż: ma jistgħux isibu l -ewwel impjieg, imma ma jistgħux jakkwistaw impjieg minħabba li m'għandhomx esperjenza tax-xogħol. L-apprendistati urew li jħallu impatt fuq skala kbira fuq il-promozzjoni tal-impjieg taż-żgħażagħ, u huma r-raġuni ewlenija għal livelli baxxi ta' impjieg taż-żgħażagħ ...

L-esperjenza tax-xogħol hi ferm apprezzata mill-azjendi, u n-nuqqas ta' esperjenza għalhekk tikkostitwixxi ostaklu ewlieni għal dawk li qed ifittxu x-xogħol għall-ewwel darba. Ħafna żgħażagħ jinqabdu f'ċirku vizzjuż: ma jistgħux isibu l -ewwel impjieg, imma ma jistgħux jakkwistaw impjieg minħabba li m'għandhomx esperjenza tax-xogħol. L-apprendistati urew li jħallu impatt fuq skala kbira fuq il-promozzjoni tal-impjieg taż-żgħażagħ, u huma r-raġuni ewlenija għal livelli baxxi ta' impjieg taż-żgħażagħ f'uħud mill-pajjiżi Ewropej. Kemm fil-komunikazzjoni Reviżjoni tal-Edukazzjoni u kemm fil-komunikazzjoni Impjieg taż-Żgħażagħ 2013, il-Kummissjoni Ewropea sejħet lill-Istati Membri biex iżidu l-isforzi tagħhom fl-iżvilupp ta' edukazzjoni u taħriġ vokazzjonali ta' livell dinji u biex jgħollu l-kwalità tal-ħiliet vokazzjonali u jippromovu tagħlim ibbażat fuq ix-xogħol inklużi apprendistati ta' kwalità, apprendistati u sistemi doppji. Bl-istess mod, il-Parlament Ewropew (PE), wara talba mill-Kumitat għall-Kultura u l- Edukazzjoni (CULT), ippubblika studju li jeżamina l-punti pożittivi u d-dgħufijiet tal-edukazzjoni doppja u jesplora l-iżviluppi ta' politika fl-UE-28 fir-rigward tal-introduzzjoni u/jew it-titjib ta' dan it-tip ta' tagħlim.

Věra Jourová - Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality - Hearings of European Commissioners-designate

26-09-2014

The Commissioner-designate for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality is Vĕra Jourová. Her hearing will take place before the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, the Committee on Legal Affairs, the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality on Wednesday 01 October 2014 (13:30−16:30).

The Commissioner-designate for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality is Vĕra Jourová. Her hearing will take place before the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, the Committee on Legal Affairs, the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality on Wednesday 01 October 2014 (13:30−16:30).

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