Upcoming Events

Sep
27
Mon
2021
Realising Europe’s soft power in external cooperation and trade (RESPECT): research outcomes @ ULB Brussels and online
Sep 27 @ 9:15 am – 3:45 pm
Realising Europe’s soft power in external cooperation and trade (RESPECT): research outcomes @ ULB Brussels and online

The aim of this workshop is to present and discuss the main findings of RESPECT research with the Brussels community.

Realising Europe’s soft power in external cooperation and trade (RESPECT) is a research project funded by the European Commission under Horizon 2020 (GA 770680) for the period 2018- 2021. Implemented by a consortium of 10 academic institutions and research institutes, a key focus is to investigate factors that support or inhibit attainment of EU trade and non-trade policy objectives and to draw out policy recommendations for the design of external trade and investment policies. The aim of this workshop is to present and discuss the main findings of RESPECT research with the Brussels community.
Sep
28
Tue
2021
US-China competition, COVID-19, and democratic backsliding in Asia: implications for Europe @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati
Sep 28 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
US-China competition, COVID-19, and democratic backsliding in Asia: implications for Europe @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic emergency has had a major impact in Asia – from South Asia, through Southeast Asia all the way to North Korea. It has allowed states to further centralise control over economic and social affairs – arguably also for good reasons – and has lent legitimacy to a recrudescence of nationalist and protectionist instincts, effectively empowering many of the region’s strongmen. The ripple effects of a post-pandemic depression are hard to discern.

As popular discontent mounts, populist strongmen and democratic leaders alike may exhaust the charisma acquired through COVID-19 crisis-responses, ushering the way to two broad scenarios. A pessimistic outlook suggests further political decay and deepening geopolitical tensions as national interests more easily clash, and leadership seeks to divert attention from socio-economic grievances. Alternatively, contemporary history has demonstrated that genuine political evolution, new social compacts, redistributive political economies and multilateral systems of governance may acquire a new shine following a major crisis. Still, COVID-19 is among the factors that have widened the rift between the United States and China, bringing bilateral relations to their lowest level since Nixon and Kissinger’s overtures in 1971. In fact, US-China zero-sum interactions across the geopolitical, economic, technological and political domains spiralled towards a race to the bottom in 2020.

The fight against COVID19 and its aftermath, democratic backsliding, China’s assertiveness and the US pushback are making the Asian seas stormier. How are regional powers navigating them? This conference brings together Italy’s best contemporary Asia experts to take stock of latest developments and address these questions.

This event is by invitation only.

Oct
5
Tue
2021
China’s departure from ‘revolutionary diplomacy’ during the Cold War: a quiet remorse @ Online
Oct 5 @ 9:00 am – 10:30 am
China's departure from 'revolutionary diplomacy' during the Cold War: a quiet remorse @ Online

First of three series of lectures by Chisako T. Masuo, Associate Professor at Kyushu University. The other two will take place on 9 November and 17 December.

The Chinese government never officially admits its mistakes. When it modifies its diplomatic policies, how does that happen? Who leads the process of change? How far can the cadres go in criticising previous policies? What is the role of the top leader? By using as an example the most significant diplomatic transformation in PRC history hitherto, Prof. Maduo reviews the slow and secretive process for formulating the ‘Independent Foreign Policy’ officially announced in 1982. This change, which occurred towards the end of the Cold War, laid the foundation for transforming international relations and norms among the socialist countries and made China fully participate in the Western international order.

Speaker: Chisako T. Masuo (Kyushu University)
Organiser: Giulio Pugliese (University of Oxford and European University Institute)

REGISTRATION

 

Oct
14
Thu
2021
World Trade Forum 2021: Digital, green and open? Global trade policy at a crossroads @ Refectory, Badia Fiesolana - and Online/Zoom*
Oct 14 @ 1:30 pm – Oct 15 @ 5:45 pm
World Trade Forum 2021: Digital, green and open? Global trade policy at a crossroads @ Refectory, Badia Fiesolana - and Online/Zoom*

The 2021 World Trade Forum, co-organsied with the World Trade Institute at the University of Bern, brings together leading trade practitioners and scholars, government officials, and representatives of international and nongovernmental organisations. Sessions will address lessons and implications of trade policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, research on digital and trade dimensions of programs to green the economy, EU external policies and prospects for plurilateral cooperation under the umbrella of the WTO. The forum in 2021 will comprise plenary sessions only – due to COVID-19 related space constraints, it will not have the usual structure with several parallel sessions at the same time. All sessions will be hybrid, with speakers that are on site or on-line. All sessions will be live-streamed.

Every year, a book related to the World Trade Forum is published with Cambridge University Press. For 2021, the book project is managed by Henry Gao (Singapore Management University), Damian Raess (WTI) and Ka Zeng (University of Arkansas). The book project this year will organize parallel sessions in November on the topic ‘China and the WTO’.

PROGRAMME & REGISTRATION

Oct
21
Thu
2021
Differentiation in EU’s foreign and security policy @ Online
Oct 21 @ 9:00 am – 2:00 pm
Differentiation in EU’s foreign and security policy @ Online

A workshop (21-22 October 2021) aiming to advance the scholarly debate on differentiation in EU’s foreign and security policy by providing a more comprehensive understanding of this increasingly important phenomenon, its underlying logic, manifestations, and the consequences for the coherence of this policy area.

21 October @ 09.00 – 17.00 CEST
22 October @ 09.00 – 14.00 CEST

In the last decade, due to both institutional developments and external pressures resulting from the growing unpredictability of the EU’s security environment, EU’s foreign policy practices have grown increasingly complex. Among other institutional practices, instances of both internal and external differentiation have increased. Scholarly attention has focused on the value – or lack thereof – of differentiation for the coherence of the EU’s foreign and security policy, as well on the various forms that differentiated integration (DI) can take in this policy field (e.g. Permanent Structured Cooperation). Yet, despite the growing debate on DI in EU’s foreign and security policy, there is a general lack of scholarly work offering convincing theoretical explanation underpinned by empirical data. Additionally, existing literature generally overlooks the reasons why the existing Treaty-based mechanisms that can enable differentiation in this policy sector, such as constructive abstention, have hardly been used.

Against this backdrop, the aim of the workshop is to advance the scholarly debate, and to grasp the complexity of differentiation in EU’s foreign and security policy by providing a more comprehensive understanding of this increasingly important phenomenon, its underlying logic, manifestations, and the consequences for the coherence of this policy area.

PROGRAMME & REGISTRATION

 

Nov
9
Tue
2021
The rise and fall of the state Oceanic administration: domestic factors in Chinese foreign policy @ Online
Nov 9 @ 9:00 am – 10:30 am
The rise and fall of the state Oceanic administration: domestic factors in Chinese foreign policy @ Online

Second of three series of lectures by Chisako T. Masuo, Associate Professor at Kyushu University. The other two will take place on 5 October and 17 December.

In 2003, the Hu Jintao administration optimistically argued that China would achieve a ‘Peaceful Rise’ in the global order and promoted cooperative multilateral diplomacy. However, when Hu Jintao retired as General Secretary of the Communist Party in 2012, China was surrounded by hostile neighbours across the sea, who were deeply suspicious about China’s maritime ambitions. The change in situations was brought about by the regular law enforcement activities in the South and East China Sea carried out by the China Marine Surveillance under the State Oceanic Administration (SOA). The SOA was a small, low-profile organisation in the late 1990s but grew rapidly in the 2000s by inflaming anti-Japanese nationalism over the Senkaku/Diaoyu Island issue in China. This seminar will review the SOA’s organisational history until its dismantlement in 2018 and discuss how domestic factors can affect external relations in China.

Speaker: Chisako T. Masuo (Kyushu University)
Organiser: Giulio Pugliese (University of Oxford and European University Institute)

PROGRAMME & REGISTRATION

Dec
17
Fri
2021
Political and historical implications of Chinese ‘national spatial infrastructure’: Why high-tech innovations? @ Emeroteca, Badia Fiesolana, EUI
Dec 17 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am
Political and historical implications of Chinese 'national spatial infrastructure': Why high-tech innovations? @ Emeroteca, Badia Fiesolana, EUI

Third of three series of lectures by Chisako T. Masuo, Associate Professor at Kyushu University. The other two take place on 5 October and 9 November.

In recent years, Xi Jinping has been calling both for China’s people and the global population to ‘stand on the right side of history’. On the basis of the Communist Party’s unique Marxist understanding of history, Xi believes that he is carrying out an important historical mission to ‘win’ the next age by achieving advanced high-tech innovations that will be the foundation for the next generation of human society. For this purpose, China has been building a huge ‘National Spatial Infrastructure’ that covers the entire globe with a network of satellites, enabling the government to obtain, monitor, and communicate various data on human activities and global conditions from the sky.

Speaker: Chisako T. Masuo (Kyushu University)
Organiser: Giulio Pugliese (University of Oxford and European University Institute)

PROGRAMME & REGISTRATION