Policy overview: A European Defence Union by 2025? Work in progress

“We need further bold steps in the next five years towards a genuine European Defence Union.” This goal was proclaimed by Ursula von der Leyen when she took office as the new President of the European Commission in 2019. Given the developments in this area, is the EU likely to be equipped with a Defence Union by 2025?

This question is examined by Katarina Engberg, senior advisor at SIEPS. In this policy overview, she describes the drivers behind the EU’s defence policy, its current and evolving elements as well as remaining weaknesses, considering the role of defence throughout the EU’s history.

With this overview, the reader is offered a roadmap for assessing the evolution of European defence policy over time: Will the proclaimed Defence Union amount to the mere accumulation of pragmatic progress? Or will it result from jolts produced by political initiatives or/and external challenges?

In the overview, it is also suggested that the EU calls out defence more clearly, now shrouded under the cover of external crisis management and industrial policy.

On the agenda: Strategic autonomy

An industrial strategy is considered one of the instruments for strengthening the EU's sovereignty. In a SIEPS anthology, the EU's industrial policy is examined by leading scholars, with a focus on the effects on the Single Market.

Recent publications in English

From self-doubt to self-assurance: The European External Action Service as the indispensable support for a geopolitical EU

The rivalry of today’s world should induce the EU to act as a cohesive force. Yet, EU countries are still struggling to focus on the common interest. The 10th anniversary of the European External Action Service thus constitutes an opportune moment to reconsider its contribution to EU foreign policy. This report on the EEAS is the fruit of a research cooperation to which SIEPS has contributed. (January 2021)

Protecting the rule of law in EU Member States and Candidate Countries

The respect for the rule of law is declining both in EU member states and in countries aspiring to membership. The EU therefore needs to step up its efforts and adopt a more inclusive, coherent, and transparent approach. This argument is developed by Marko Kmezić and Florian Bieber at the University of Graz. (2020:12epa)

State Interests and Bargaining Power in the Reform of the Eurozone

Following the deep euro crisis, the EU governments agreed on eurozone reforms that constituted a substantial deepening of European integration. In this report, political scientists Lisa Dellmuth, Magnus Lundgren and Jonas Tallberg analyse the dynamics behind the eurozone reform and discuss implications for future policy. (2020:4)

EU Industrial Policy in a Globalised World - Effects on the Single Market

As the EU aims at strengthening the competitivity of European companies, the functioning of the Single Market comes to the fore. Is a more assertive industrial policy compatible with free and fair competition? This question is studied in a volume focusing on the legal instruments that govern the EU’s internal market. (2020:1op)

Green paths through a pandemic

The present pandemic crisis brings uncertainty to the European Green Deal – the ambitious plan for environmental and climate progress. What can policymakers do if they wish to keep the green momentum? Mats Engström, senior advisor at SIEPS, offers six courses of action. (2020:8epa)

Past seminars in English

Tax Sovereignty in a Globalised and Digitalised World

On 4 February, SIEPS and the Expert Group on Public Economics (ESO) jointly arranged a seminar with the aim of disseminating knowledge about the organisations’ work on taxation and to identify important areas for research with respect to taxation in a digitalised and globalised world.

The seminar was filmed.

EU Industrial Policy in a globalised world – effects on state aid and internal market rules

On the 31st of January 2020, SIEPS and The Permanent Representation of Sweden to the European Union in Brussel held a seminar on the EU Industrial Policy. 

The seminar was filmed and is available on Facebook.

The rule of law: Democracy’s bastion, or its nemesis?

Seminar on the rule of law and democracy, 27 January 2020, co-organized by SIEPS and CER and hosted by the Swedish Permanent Representation to the EU.

More pictures and a short summary. 


Subscribe to our newsletter

We send invitations to seminars, information about new publications and thematic issues on current issues. We process your email in accordance with our privacy policy.