Civil society actors around the world are grappling with competition between values systems. Rising geopolitical tensions affect international civil society and its role in this shifting global order.
The mismatch between how the EU perceives its international role and how it is viewed abroad is glaring at times. Whereas the union sees itself as a champion of multilateralism and a generous donor, those in the Global South frequently criticize the EU as being hypocritical, self-serving, and post-colonial.
Financed by the EU, the construction of the Pelješac Bridge in Croatia has been a resounding success for Chinese soft power. Policymakers in Brussels should implement changes to the union’s procurement policy to avoid supporting the ambitions of its economic competitor and systemic rival.
Many countries critical to the global effort to tackle climate change have poor human rights records. Democracies must find ways to ensure progress on both fronts.
Countries around the world are struggling to bridge the gap between citizens and political elites. Innovative practices outside the West, while far from ideal, should be considered in debates about democratic renewal in Europe.
Berlin’s pursuit of economic and political ties with Beijing and Moscow has created dangerous dependencies. A change in strategy would benefit both Germany and the EU.
While China has charged ahead in developing a global strategy for the energy transition, which utilizes both its foreign and security policies, the EU is trying to compete through next-generation technology.
The promotion of the rule of law across borders should be implemented based on clear and objective standards, and distinguished from state-building exercises.
Amid soaring energy prices, Russia’s continued war in Ukraine, and tensions over Taiwan, the EU will have no respite. The bloc mustn’t let internal crises distract from strategically dealing with external challenges.