Stefan Lehne

Visiting Scholar
Carnegie Europe
Lehne is a visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe in Brussels, where his research focuses on the post–Lisbon Treaty development of the European Union’s foreign policy, with a specific focus on relations between the EU and member states.


MA, International Relations, Fletcher School on Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University 
JD, University of Vienna


English; French; German

Contact Information


Stefan Lehne is a visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe in Brussels, where he researches the post–Lisbon Treaty development of the European Union’s foreign policy with a specific focus on relations between the EU and member states. 

From 2009–2011, Lehne served as director general for political affairs at the Austrian Ministry for European and International Affairs. Prior to that position, from 2002–2008, he served the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union as director for the Balkans, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. Previously, he was head of the Task Force for Western Balkans and Central Europe. He has held a number of other appointments in the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and was a researcher at the Austrian Institute for International Politics.

Lehne’s work on issues of European foreign and security policy has been widely published in a number of academic journals, including Integration, the Austrian Journal of Political Science, and Europa Archiv. In addition, he has authored a number of monographs on the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe.

  • Strategic Europe November 19, 2015
    Toward a European Neighborhood Realpolitik?

    The EU’s recent review of its European Neighborhood Policy offers a more realistic and practical approach to the union’s relations with its neighbors.

  • Europe
    Article November 18, 2015
    Are Referenda Blocking the EU’s Progress?

    As populism has grown in many EU countries, demands have proliferated for referenda to check European integration. The pressure for more direct democracy is stepping up.

  • Strategic Europe November 10, 2015
    Five Regional Assessments of the Refugee Crisis

    Five Carnegie Europe scholars discuss how the migration and refugee crisis is affecting different parts of the globe.

  • Refugees
    Q&A October 1, 2015 عربي
    The Roots of Europe’s Refugee Crisis

    The refugee crisis is impacting political stability in the Middle East and Europe. How should leaders respond to the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II?

  • OSCE
    Paper September 22, 2015
    Reviving the OSCE: European Security and the Ukraine Crisis

    The OSCE has been the most appropriate framework to manage the Ukraine crisis. To continue to play a useful role, the body must adjust its methods and strengthen its toolbox.

  • Strategic Europe July 29, 2015
    The OSCE From Confrontation to Cooperation and Back Again

    In crisis situations between the West and Russia, the OSCE offers a useful safety net to preserve a minimum level of stability. No other body could replace it.

  • EU
    Article April 28, 2015
    Where in the World Is the EU?

    The EU’s perspective and action are clearly global in nature. However, the scope of the union’s international ambitions remains uncertain.

  • Paper February 16, 2015
    Are Prime Ministers Taking Over EU Foreign Policy?

    The European Council is now the leading actor in EU foreign policy making, but it lacks coherence and ambition. Can the EU reenergize its approach to external relations?

  • Paper January 26, 2015
    Emotional Intelligence for EU Democracy

    The EU needs to restore its dwindling democratic legitimacy by offering solutions that feel relevant to citizens.

  • Strategic Europe December 12, 2014
    Relaunching the European Neighborhood Policy

    The EU should abandon the concept of a single set of standards and instruments for all of its neighbors. It is time for a revolution in the European Neighborhood Policy.

  • Ministers
    April 28, 2015 Brussels
    Can Prime Ministers Do Foreign Policy?

    European leaders should boost the foreign policy role of the European Council and the EU’s other institutions—but will they?

  • March 2, 2015 Vienna
    The European Neighborhood Policy: Which Way Forward?

    Ten years after its launch, it is time to rethink the European Neighborhood Policy. There is a need for greater differentiation and for more nimble and flexible instruments.

  • European Parliament
    February 18, 2015 Brussels
    How to Fix EU Democracy

    To everyday citizens, the EU institutions appear distant, obscure, and elitist. With populism and Euroskepticism on the rise, how can the EU win back the trust of its people?

  • European Union
    May 15, 2014 Brussels
    Time to Upgrade EU Foreign Policy

    Facing crises in Ukraine and the Middle East, it is past time to reform and strengthen the European Union’s foreign policy.

  • European Union; Neighborhood
    March 13, 2014 Brussels
    Resetting the European Neighborhood Policy

    The EU’s approach to its neighbors is not working. Launching a fundamentally renewed European Neighborhood Policy should be a top priority for the EU leadership.

  • June 25, 2013 Beirut
    Syrian Refugees in Lebanon: Impact and Recommendations

    The ongoing armed conflict in Syria is forcing Syrians to take refuge in neighboring countries, causing an especially predictable negative impact on Lebanon. This spillover effect not only changes the dynamics of Lebanon’s social, economic, and political equation, but also creates wider implications for the region.

  • Carnegie Europe
    September 26, 2012 Brussels
    The Big Three in EU Foreign Policy

    As the EU struggles with the ongoing euro crisis, the attitude of the "big three" will crucially influence the future scope and direction of its role in international relations.

  • March 15, 2012 Brussels
    The Arab Awakening One Year On: What Kind of Partner Can Europe Be?

    A year has passed since the first uprisings in Tunisia spurred a fundamental change in the dynamics of Europe’s southern neighborhood, creating a host of domestic and external challenges for the region and its neighbors.

  • February 2, 2012 Brussels
    More Action, Better Service: How to Strengthen the European External Action Service

    The European External Action Service suffers from a number of design flaws including a lack of genuine buy-in on the parts of key stakeholders, such as the member states and the European Commission.

  • October 5, 2011 Brussels
    Leon Panetta from Tripoli to Chicago: Charting NATO's Future on the Way to the 2012 Summit

    NATO is facing a number of serious challenges from the current fiscal and security environment and the successful realization of the alliance’s security responsibilities requires dependable partners that more equitably share the ensuing burden.

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