The Institute for Development and International Relations, in co-operation with the Zagreb Office of the Hanns Seidel Stiftung, organised a conference entitled ‘The Future of Europe: The Role of the EU in the World’ on Friday, 28th May 2021. It was organised in a hybrid way, with only few speakers present in person (Hotel Sheraton, Zagreb), while all others were participating in an electronic way due to COVID-19 related epidemic restrictions.
The conference represents a continuation of IRMO’s and HSSt’s dedication to the development of discourse about relevant European and international topics, relevant for the EU and entire international community. Current geostrategic environment creates wide range of substantial challenges for the EU. While its capacity to tackle challenging developments directly affect its leverage at the global scale, the complexity of its decision-making mechanisms and different foreign policy interests of member states represent a serious obstacle to synergy of the EU as a whole in the field of foreign and security policy. What are the perspectives of development in the field of EU CSDP? How will the EU perceive its role and define implementable capacities in order to build and fortify its status at the international level? What are the biggest challenges and opportunities for the EU in the period to come? What type of action and strategic positioning can EU expect from other relevant global players? Where is a functional co-operation possible and where is conflict (in any form) imminent? What can EU do to adapt to the new strategic environment? These are the questions that would be in focus of our discussion.
The debate gathered representatives of international organisations, academic community, civil society and diplomatic community. A rich and interactive debate was focused on the role of EU in its wider geostrategic environment and its relations with other relevant global actors.