The Crisis of Sovereignty in Europe

While sovereignty is pulled from above and from below in international, European and local processes, member states still want to hold it back. This seminar seeks to explore the meaning of sovereignty in today’s Europe, as the tension between supranationalism and intergovernmentalism intensifies.

PERFORMED ACTIVITY
20 November 2019 - 16:00h
LOCATION: CIDOB, sala Jordi Maragall, Elisabets 12, 08001 Barcelona
ORGANIZED BY: CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs) and CETC (Centre d’Estudis de Temes Contemporanis)

COLLABORATORS (1):

PARTNERS:

Objective

The European Union member states perceive how their national sovereignty is inevitably eroding. Interdependence and global dynamics, from European integration to economic crises and climate breakdown, have curtailed the capacity for states’ autonomous action. At the same time, the gradual importance of sub-national actors like cities, which govern everyday spaces, or regions, which reclaim further decentralisation, also contest state structures and their legitimacy. 

Yet, as a response to these trends, states opt for slowing down the process of European integration, privileging intergovernmentalism over common strategies and policies. Supranational institutions such as the European Commission or the European Parliament are often relegated to a secondary role, overshadowed by the primacy of the European Council and the Council of the EU.         

While sovereignty is pulled from above and from below in international, European and local processes, member states still want to hold it back. This seminar, co-organised by CETC and CIDOB, seeks to explore first the meaning of sovereignty in today’s Europe, as the tension between supranationalism and intergovernmentalism intensifies. Second, it discusses ways to institutionalise forms of shared sovereignty up from below, in order to address the tensions and crises of state sovereignty. 

In order to meet these objectives, the two-day seminar will be structured in two keynotes, that are followed by two roundtables. The first keynote and roundtable explore the challenges to European integration by considering two ideas: the prospects for multispeed Europe and multi-level governance processes. The former considers how different parts of the Union can integrate at different pace and degree, to accommodate different political sensibilities and contestations (from eurosceptics to eurocritics). The latter discusses the role of different levels of governance, from cities or regions like Catalonia to supranational actors like the EU, to address future crises. 

The second keynote and subsequent roundtable think of sovereignty as “taking back control”. They discuss the weakening of the social Europe, particularly as a consequence of the economic and migratory crises. Rethinking sovereignty requires thinking novel ways of addressing social concerns: from developing integrated fiscal programmes or improving service provisions at the subnational level to make reforms that could enable more humane and efficient responses to future migration flows. While the Catalan government and the Barcelona City Council have been critical of national and European responses, it is yet unclear which redistribution of sovereign competences would make a difference in key social matters.

Files

Participants

SPEAKERS

Pere Almeda

Pere Almeda

Director, CETC (Centre d’Estudis de Temes Contemporanis)

Rym Ayadi

Rym Ayadi

Founder and Director, Euro-Mediterranean Network for Economic Studies; Senior Advisor, CEPS (Centre for European Policy Studies)

Antoni Bassas

Antoni Bassas

Antoni Bassas, Journalist, ARA Newspaper

Mireia Borrell Porta

Mireia Borrell Porta

Secretary for Foreign Action and the European Union, Government of Catalonia

Carme Colomina

Carme Colomina

Researcher, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs); Journalist, ARA Newspaper

Emmanuel Comte

Emmanuel Comte

Research Fellow, Vienna School of International Studies

Blanca Garcés

Blanca Garcés

Senior Research Fellow and Research Coordinator, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

Alfons González Bondia

Alfons González Bondia

Director General for European and Mediterranean Affairs, Government of Catalonia

Ulrike Guérot

Ulrike Guérot

Professor and Head of Department, Danube-University Krems (DUK)

Pol Morillas

Pol Morillas

Director, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Kalypso Nicolaïdis

Director and Professor of International Relations, Centre for International Studies, University of Oxford

Eleonora Poli

Eleonora Poli

Research Fellow, IAI (Instituto Affari Internazionale)

Eulalia Rubio

Eulalia Rubio

Senior Research Fellow, Jacques Delors Institute

Sophia Russack

Sophia Russack

Researcher, CEPS (Centre for European Policy Studies)

Marc Sanjaume

Marc Sanjaume

Adjunct Professor, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF)

Antoni Segura

Antoni Segura

President, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

Simon Toubeau

Simon Toubeau

Assistant Professor, School of Politics and International Relations, University of Nottingham

The Crisis of Sovereignty in Europe PERFORMED ACTIVITY

November 20

16:00h Opening

Antoni Segura, President, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

Mireia Borrell Porta, Secretary for Foreign Action and the European Union, Government of Catalonia

16:20h Introduction

Pol Morillas, Director, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

16:30h Three Meanings of Brexit in the New Sovereignty Paradigm

Keynote speech:   Kalypso Nicolaïdis, Director and Professor of International Relations, Centre for International Studies, University of Oxford

Initial comments:   Antoni Bassas, Journalist, ARA Newspaper

17:30h Coffee break

18:00h Rountable “Sovereignties: European Integration and Multilevel Governance”

Input statements:  Simon Toubeau, Assistant Professor, School of Politics and International Relations, University of Nottingham

                              Sophia Russack, Researcher, CEPS (Centre for European Policy Studies)  

                              Marc Sanjaume, Adjunct Professor, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF)

                              Eleonora Poli, Research Fellow, IAI (Instituto Affari Internazionale)

              Chair:      Pere Almeda, Director, CETC (Centre d’Estudis de Temes Contemporanis)

November 21

09:30h Meaning, Range and Limits of Sovereignty. Times of “Global Modernity”

Keynote speech:   Ulrike Guérot, Professor and Head of Department, Danube-University Krems (DUK)

Initial comments:   Carme Colomina, Researcher, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs); Journalist, ARA Newspaper

10:30h Coffee break

11:00h Rountable “Taking Back Control? Inequalities and Social Europe”

Input statements:  Eulalia Rubio, Senior Research Fellow, Jacques Delors Institute

                              Emmanuel Comte, Research Fellow, Vienna School of International Studies

                              Rym Ayadi, Founder and Director, Euro-Mediterranean Network for Economic Studies; Senior Advisor, CEPS (Centre for European

                              Policy Studies)

                              Blanca Garcés, Senior Research Fellow and Research Coordinator, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

                Chair:    Pol Morillas, Director, CIDOB (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs)

12:30h Closing

Alfons González Bondia, Director General for European and Mediterranean Affairs, Government of Catalonia

13:00h Networking Lunch