Op-Eds/Commentary

The EU-US Privacy Shield Framework – A New Paradigm for an Evolving Digital World

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Regardless of how effectively the Privacy Shield or any other framework protects European citizens’ personal data, it is certain to be highly scrutinized and challenged by...

B|Brief: An American Revolution - The Election of President Donald Trump

The election of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States marks a seismic shift in American politics. Although the specifics of Trump’s domestic and foreign policy priorities have been elusive to date, his comments have provided a useful window into how his administration will approach key issues that will promptly land on the new president’s desk. For the trans-Atlantic relationship, there is legitimate cause for concern.

B|Brief: In Search of the Center - The Beginning of the End of Political Extremism?

President Dwight D. Eisenhower once said, “Extremes to the right and to the left of any political dispute are always wrong,” and yet that is where the politics of the United States are firmly entrenched at the moment. But the U.S. is not alone. Across the European continent, nations are flirting with extreme ideological movements on the right and the left, fueling the flames of nationalism and xenophobia.

B|Brief: TTIP Negotiators Make Small Gains, No Major Breakthroughs in Final Round before US Elections

U.S. and EU trade officials gathered in New York City during the week of October 3-7 for the 15th round of Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations. For the first time since negotiations began in 2013, senior European Commission and U.S. government officials have publicly acknowledged that TTIP will not be concluded before the end of U.S. President Barack Obama’s term.

Trans-Atlantic Trade at the Crossroads: Prospects for TTIP in 2016 and Beyond

After three years of negotiations, TTIP is at a critical juncture. If the agreement is not concluded this year, the results of upcoming elections on both sides of the Atlantic will unquestionably disrupt its course.

B|Brief: To Counter Extremism, Europe Must Move Beyond Security and Focus on Neighborhoods

Following a spate of deadly attacks in Western Europe, governments have adopted a largely military-oriented response to secure the homeland and counter violent extremism. Amid renewed calls for yet more security measures, and with Germany considering the deployment of soldiers to its streets for the first time since World War II, governments at the national and city level must not discount the efficacy of...

B|Brief: Inside Turkey’s Economy: Risks, Rewards and the Challenges Ahead

On July 15, Turkey’s tumultuous 2016 took a shocking twist as elements within the country’s military attempted a coup against the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In the days following the attempt, Erdogan declared a three-month state of emergency and began purges of depth and breadth that extended beyond public ministries and into the private sector.

Now, many question the extent to which Erdogan will consolidate power, and what implications this could have for Turkish democracy and for broader regional geopolitics.

In the coming months, Turkey’s economic resilience could play an equally important factor in determining the outcome of the current upheaval.

B|Brief: A New Role for France: Europe’s Pivotal Nation

The British referendum on membership to the European Union sent shockwaves in every conceivable direction. Many on the European continent pronounced the Brexit vote, the end of two unions – the United Kingdom and the EU.

Germany, a country that has based its post-WWII foreign policy on consensus building, multilateralism and a strong Europe, now finds itself in a position with which it is decidedly uncomfortable – leader of Europe. Caught in the middle – both geographically and politically – of this Brexit maelstrom is France, which must now pivot between the United Kingdom and Germany, in equal measure, to strengthen the bonds in a Europe that is becoming increasingly fragmented.

B|Brief: Negotiators Advance TTIP Agenda but Several Key Issues Remain

The latest round of negotiations of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) concluded earlier this month with an air of uncertainty, as U.S. and EU negotiators committed to continue the process of resolving differences and consolidating texts without concrete plans for when or where the next round will take place.

Negotiators tabled a record number of text proposals this round and made progress on important technical details related to market access, regulatory issues and trade rules. However, the parties remain deadlocked on several critical elements of the agreement, including market access for services, government procurement and investment protection.

B|Brief: Protecting Europe’s Family Ties in Trying Times

In 1946, it was British Conservative Winston Churchill who famously called for the creation of a European family and the establishment of a United States of Europe. So perhaps it is fitting that another Tory may preside over the family’s dissolution.

The upcoming British EU referendum is a step in the wrong direction for the European Union, but it certainly isn’t the first. What began as a dream of an ever-closer union has devolved into a collection of states in which national interest trumps unity.

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