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European Academy North-Rhine Westphalia and soldiers of the German “Bundeswehr” visit ZEI

December 2011

In the framework of a seminar on “European politics and European security”, the European Academy North-Rhine Westphalia now visited ZEI to hear a presentation and learn about the work of the institute. The seminar was held for a group of soldiers from the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) as part of their activities in political education. In this context, ZEI Junior Fellow Matthias Vogl was asked to give a presentation on the “Common Foreign and Security Policy” (CFSP) of the European Union. The lecture was dedicated to the historical background of European foreign policy, as well as to the contents, instruments and institutions, as they have developed since the treaty of Maastricht in 1992. The efforts of the EU to present itself as a capable actor on the international stage have increased during the last years. Consequently, the voice of the EU in this policy field is heard more clearly now. At the same time, the Union is still suffering from a fragmented institutional structure and an often missing political will of the Member States to transfer even more powers and competences to the regional level. Bearing this in mind, the lecturer as well as the audience came to the conclusion that the EU still has serious problems to fulfill its ever growing ambitions in the field of foreign and security policy. How the EU institutions and the Member States deal with this in their daily work should be the topic of a visit in Brussels in the further course of the seminar. 

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