Archive: Reports 2005-2021
AIES Talk – The Euro Between Dollar and Renminbi
On October 19, 2021, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend welcomed the Governor of the Austrian Central Bank, Prof. Dr. Robert Holzmann, for a discussion on "The Euro between Dollar and Renminbi". Discussed were the effects of the Covid crisis on the financial market and the economy, the importance of the dollar as a reserve currency was elaborated, but also the increasing significance of the euro. Finally, the Evergrande crisis in China and the impact this may have on Europe were examined, but also what the future of cash and cryptocurrencies looks like.
Watch the talk here.
AUKUS: Resetting the European Thinking on Indo-Pacific?
On October 13, 2021, AIES Director Velina Tchakarova participated in the ISDP Webinar on AUKUS: Resetting the European Thinking on Indo-Pacific?. The webinar aimed at analysing the significance of the AUKUS and its strategic fallout, and draw the future implications for Europe and the region at large.
You can watch the webinar here.
AUKUS: Resetting European Thinking on the Indo-Pacific? Edited by Niklas Swanström Jagannath Panda, Special Paper October 2021, Institue for Security & Development Policy. With a contribution by Velina Tchakarova.
Upheavals in Europe
On October 13 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Ursula Plassnik, who served as Austria's Foreign Minister from October 2004 to December 2008, to discuss the topic of "Upheavals in Europe." Topics of the discussion included the resignation of Sebastian Kurz as Austrian Chancellor, the possible consequences of this step, as well as the federal elections in Germany and potential government coalitions in Berlin.
Watch the AIES Talk (in German) here.
AIES Talk – Turkey's Great Power Ambitions
On October 6, 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the President of the Foreign Policy Institute, Prof. Dr. Hüseyin Bağcı, to a discussion on "Turkey's Great Power Ambition." Among the topics discussed were Turkish foreign and defense policy, bilateral relations, e.g. with Libya or Russia, the poor economic situation and the military presence in Syria. The AIES Talk can be accessed here (in English).
AIES Talk – Germany before the change?!
On September 22, 2021, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited former President of the European Parliament Hans-Gert Pöttering to talk about the upcoming federal elections in Germany. Questions concerning the next coalition and the need for reform in Germany were discussed, as well as Germany's position in the EU and its relations with countries such as the USA, Russia and China. A dominant topic of the discussion was the leadership position Germany can take in security and defense policy issues in the EU. The AIES Talk is available here.
AIES Talk – Iran under president Raisi
On September 15, 2021 AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Arian Hamidi Faal to talk about the political situation in Iran after the election of the new President Raisi. The background and career of the newly elected president Ebrahin Raisi was discussed, the new government and ministers, but also the political isolation of the country, the nuclear deal and the precarious economic situation. The AIES Talk can be accessed here.
Three Seas Initiative Generation Freedom Conference
AIES Director Velina Tchakarova attended the Three Seas Initiative Generation Freedom Conference in Warsaw and gave a speech on the 3SI Future Scenarios 2050.
20 years 9/11 – Geopolitics form New York to Afghanistan
On September 9, 2021, AIES Director Velina Tchakarova participated in a panel discussion on the topic "20 years 9/11 - Geopolitics from New York to Afghanistan", organized by the Austrian-American Society on the occasion of the anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the USA. Four experts discussed the 2001 attacks, the subsequent global impact and finally the recent withdrawal of international troops from Afghanistan. 9/11 is characterized by an unparalleled media presence and accelerated the fight against terror. The panel discussion is available here (in German).
Special podcast series on US-Europe relations
In cooperation with the US Embassy in Vienna, the AIES launched a special podcast series on US-Europe relations. Throughout this seven-episode series, a range of topics such as US-EU cooperation in the fight against climate change, the future of NATO or the transatlantic efforts to safeguard the liberal international order are discussed with high-level experts from the US. All episodes are available on the AIES Podcast „Politics on Point“ here and on iTunes, Spotify and Youtube.
Advanced Strategic Course on European Security and Defence
Velina Tchakarova, AIES Director, participated in the third module of the Advanced Strategic Course on European Security and Defence in Paris, France. The Course was organised by Bundesakademie fur Sicherheitspolitik - BAKS (Germany), Egmont Institute (Belgium), IHEDN (France), Royal Higher Institute for Defence (RHID) (Belgium) and the European Security and Defence College (ESDC). It aimed at senior and varied audience, including senior people from industry and academia. In terms of substance, the Advanced Strategic Course addressed the full remit of the EU Global Strategy, of which the CSDP is one of the core policies. The core audience was top senior managers/members (equivalent to brigadier/general (or equivalent ranks), political and security directors, State secretaries etc.) from defence, security, diplomacy, and industry from all EU Member States and from the EU Institutions: those that will make decisions on and implement strategy. In addition, selected academics were invited and their work contributed to the substance and to the image of EU strategy.
Georgia and the challenges in the Black Sea Region
On the 26th of May 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited H.E. the Ambassador Ketevan Tsikhelashvili to the online AIES Talk to discuss Georgia and the challenges in the South Caucasus.
The main points of the discussion were the democratic consolidation of Georgia, its commitment in the fight against corruption and poverty as well as the achievement of the objectives of the Association Agreement with the EU. Moreover, the role of the EU in supporting the economic and political growth of the country as well as its challenges related to security and stability in the South Caucasus region were discussed.
AIES and ESDC organised a course on the topic of "EU Facing 'Hybrid Threat' Challenges"
On June 10th and 11th 2021, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) in cooperation with the European Security and Defence College (ESDC) organised the digital course EU Facing "Hybrid Threat" Challenges. The course was aimed at preparing over 40 military officers and civil servants from Member States, EU Institutions, and relevant Agencies to effectively develop security policies and strategies in the face of hybrid threat challenges. From cyber-warfare to the spread of disinformation, the multidimensional topic of hybrid threats was holistically and interactively elaborated by our senior-lecturers in a most-excellent fashion.
Janne Jokinen, Senior Analyst, COI Hybrid Influence, European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats
Alexander Klimburg, Director, Cyber Policy and Resilience Program, Hague Centre for Strategic Studies
Sabrina Spieleder, EEAS Policy Officer, Strategic Communications and Information Analysis Division
Ruth Gursch-Adam, AIES Senior Advisor, Senior Advisor Cyber and Hybrid Threats/Department for Security Policy in the Austrian MFA
Teemu Tammikko, EEAS Policy Officer, SECDEFPOL 1 – Hybrid Threats
Khan Jahier, Staff Officer, Enablement and Resilience, Defence Policy and Planning Division, NATO IS
Ralph Thiele, President, EuroDefense Germany, Chairman, Political-Military Society, CEO StratByrd Consulting
Daniel Fiott, Security and Defence Editor, EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS)
What are the main takeaways from the Conference on the Future of Europe?
On the 5th of May 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Ulrike Guérot, Professor for European Policy and Study of Democracy, to the online AIES Talk, in order to discuss the prospects of the Conference on the Future of Europe.
Important aspects of the Talk were the strengths and weaknesses of the European Union as well as the advantages and implications of a European Citizen Card. In addition, the welfare state components of the EU and its overall competitiveness were discussed. Funding concepts for European projects and concrete proposals for a post-pandemic Europe were also addressed.
United Kingdom's Global Review After Brexit
On the 31st of March 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Leigh Turner, British Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Vienna to the online AIES Talk, in order to discuss the United Kingdom's global review after Brexit.
Relevant topics of the talk were the short-term effects of Brexit and its lasting challenges, as well as the future of the Scottish independence movement.
Furthermore, the importance of London as a financial centre and the UK's stance on China and Russia, post-Brexit, was discussed as well.
Arab Spring without Summer?
On the 10th of February 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Martin Pabst (Colonel ret.), researcher and policy advisor, to the online AIES Talk, in order to discuss the start and development of the Arab Spring.
Relevant topics of the talk included what role the individual states in the region play as well as the origin of the revolution and its development over the past ten years. They also discussed the strategic relevance for Europe and how the EU can engage more in the region.
Geopolitical Consequences of the Covid-19 Crisis
On the 28th of April 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Walter Feichtinger, President of the Center for Strategic Analysis (CSA), to the online AIES-Talk to analyse the geopolitical consequences of the Covid-19 crisis.
The discussion was about where we stand after one and a half years of the pandemic and the different vaccination strategies. They also talked about the global impact of the pandemic and compared the situations in China, America, Russia and Europe. They concluded with a debate about future prospects and how Europe can successfully overcome the crisis.
AIES Talk – Putin's Power Play Against Ukraine
On 21 April 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend hosted Borys Tarasyuk, Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the Council of Europe and former Foreign Minister of Ukraine. During this AIES Talk and in light of Russia's recent military build-up at Ukraine's eastern border, Fasslabend and Tarasyuk discussed tensions between Russia and Ukraine, NATO and the EU, but also the situation in Belarus and the Caucasus and its implications for Ukraine.
Conference on the Future or Europe
The AIES is excited to have the opportunity to participate at The Conference on the Future of Europe - platform.
By sharing our ideas for a better Europe in short videos, organizing discussions and creating further relevant content like various polls to enable the people to be heard, we are trying to shape the European Union positively. We aim to support the achieving of a better EU for all of us. If you are interested, check out the platform and our contributions at:
Biden's first 100 days
On the 14th of April 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Stanley R. Sloan to the online AIES Talk to discuss President Biden's first 100 days in office.
A relevant topic of the talk was Biden's approach to domestic policy, specifically the role of the former president Donald Trump as a key figure. Foreign policy was another important aspect, covering the Euro-Atlantic relationship as well as the US strategy towards Russia and China. They also discussed the situation in the Pacific area and the role India plays in this context. Eventually, they covered the security policy approach to the Middle East and reviewed recent developments in Afghanistan.
Will Afghanistan fall to the Taliban?
On April 7th 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Dr. Markus Gauster, research associate at the Institute for Peace Support and Conflict Management (IFK), to talk about Afghanistan and the influence of the Taliban.
The main topic of the talk was the strategic role of Afghanistan. During a historical review, the failure of the occupying powers was discussed as well. Moreover, it was explained who the Taliban are, what role they play, and how dangerous they are. Finally, they focused on the question of whether there could be a disintegration of Afghanistan.
Any Chance for the Iran Nuclear Deal?
On the 24th of February 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Ambassador Ali Soltanieh, former ambassador to Iran within the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna and Dr. Heinz Gärtner, Austrian think tank director and professor at the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna, to the online AIES Talk, to discuss the prospects of an Iranian nuclear deal, OSCE achievements, opportunities as well as challenges, and future aspects.
Relevant topics of the talk were the challenges and achievements in the negotiating process thus far, what can be done to bring the major actors back to the negotiations, and whether the Abraham Accord changed Tehran's position. Moreover, they looked at the impact of the Coronavirus on the likelihood of reaching a solution.
Crisis in Belarus
On march 16th 2021 AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and AIES Director Velina Tchakarova, M.A., hosted Valery Kavaleuski, the Representative of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya's Cabinet on international affairs, to discuss the Belarus crisis. Current developments in Belarus, with special attention to the protests, as well as possible prospects for the future were covered.
Myanmar: Crisis and Perspectives
On 3 March 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend hosted Kristina Kironska, Researcher at the Palacký University Olomouc, and Alfred Gerstl, President at the Central European Institute of Asian Studies, at the AIES Talks and discussed the political developments and perspectives in Myanmar.
Main aspects of the talk included a general introduction to Myanmar followed by an analysis of its strategic importance with a special regard to China. Moreover, Myanmar's time under the military regime and the origin of the democratic movement as well as the role of Aung San Suu Kyi were examined. Lastly, the perspectives of the country and the role of the European Union for peace and security in Myanmar were discussed.
The Balkan, its crises, conflicts and perspectives
On 17 February 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Christian Wehrschütz, Journalist and Balkan expert, to the online AIES Talk to discuss the political developments and perspectives for the Balkan region.
Main aspects of the discussion included the consequences of the elections on February 14th, the relation between Serbia and Kosovo and the reliability of the European Union regarding the membership application of the western Balkan states.
Strategic Review on Global Hotspots
On the 28th of January 2021, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend discussed strategic challenges in global hotspots for 2021 with seven guest speakers. The event was opened by the Director of the Diplomatische Akademie Wien, Dr. Emil Brix. Afterwards, experts Martin Sajdik, Wolfgang Pusztai, Walter Feichtinger, Herbert Traxl, Nikolaus Scholik, Alfred Gerstl, and Ralph Thiele shared their insights on strategic trends in Eastern Europe, Africa and the Mediterranean Sea, the Middle East, India, China, Southeast Asia, and Space.
Among other things, the experts highlighted that in Eastern Europe, countries are still struggling with the consequences of the collapse of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. Besides, in Africa and the Mediterranean, countries are facing key challenges regarding demographic development, corruption, environmental degradation, and economic collapse. Furthermore, in the Middle East, Israel is no longer the number one threat, but Iran is. Meanwhile, the Indo-Pacific, including the South China Sea, has become a crucial region when it comes to global economic and political affairs, in which China, India, the US, and Southeast Asian countries play a vital role. Finally, space is increasingly becoming a domain of competition and conflict, in which Russia and China have made rapid technological improvements in their security and defence systems, while the EU and NATO countries have to level up their innovation.
The EU's Geopolitical Role 2021
Vienna (APA) - EU Commission representative Martin Selmayr pointed out that Europe must first and foremost re-establish a good transatlantic relationship with the US under President Joe Biden in order to play a role geopolitically. Second priority, he said, must be a clear and serious relationship with China, and third ought to be a stable neighbourhood, with countries such as Britain, Turkey and Russia.
On Monday, January 25th 2021, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited EU Commission Representative Dr. Martin Selmayr to a digital conversation. During this conversation, Dr. Selmayr not only stated that the European Union bears considerable influence due to its economic power and thus sets standards worldwide, but also that under President Biden it must reconnect with the US as a self-confident and responsible partner. For the future direction of Europe, Dr. Selmayr noted that a realpolitik approach must be chosen in order to find a "modus vivendi" even with difficult countries such as India, or Turkey.
EU-SAARC Think Tank Summit – Building Cooperation between European and South Asian Think Tanks
On January 20th, 2021, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend participated in the opening plenary of the EU-SAARC Think Tank Summit. Organized jointly by the Kathmandu-based Asian Institute of Diplomacy and International Affairs (AIDIA) and the Brussels-based South Asia Democratic Forum (SADF), this two-day virtual conference primarily addressed the multiple challenges but also benefits in inter-regional cooperation between the EU and South Asia. Among other things, President Fasslabend especially highlighted the reciprocal value that deeper relations between Europe and South Asia had, as Europe possessed over enormous experience when it comes to political integration whereas South Asian nations were highly adept in navigating the India-China relationship, which would both be critical aspects in the establishment of a future regional order. He furthermore stressed the geopolitical significance of South Asia, as it was located at the "center of the central region" in world politics of the 21st century, which is the Indo-Pacific.
The US and Europe under President Biden
On the 9th of December 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Johannes Pollak, Rector of the Webster University in Vienna, to talk about the US and Europe under incoming US-President Biden.
Together, they discussed the increasing polarization within the US, Biden's political priorities, as well as the potential future of the transatlantic relationship. The also touched upon likely future focus of the United States on the Indo-Pacific region, and the role of Europe as actor in the international system.
Transnistria conflict and current developments in the region
On the 2nd of December, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Ambassador and OSCE Special Representative, Thomas Mayr-Harting, to discuss the Conflict in Transnistria and current developments in the region.
Relevant topics of the talk were the origins of the conflict, the current situation in Transnistria, as well as potential solutions to solve the conflict. The role of the EU and Russia in this regard was discussed as well. In the end, Mr. Mayr-Harting also talked about the relevance of the EU Eastern Partnership, as well as the potential influence of China on the region and Transnistria and Moldova specifically.
Terrorism in Europa
On 18.11.2020 AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend, invited terrorism expert Mag. Dr. Nicolas Stockhammer to talk about terror in Europe. During the conversation, Mag. Dr. Stockhammer addressed the recent terrorist attack in the center of Vienna on 02.11.2020. He emphasized that Vienna offers an international arena due to the numerous international state-connecting organizations, which are established in the capital, and thus comes into the focus of terrorist groups. The timing of the attack was by no means random; the resources of Austrian security agencies were tied up by the Covid-19 pandemic and the priority to fight it. In addition, the attack could have the consequence that conflicts from the Middle East begin to spill over into the heartland of Europe. In order to prevent future terrorist attacks, Dr. Stockhammer sees a need for reform in the cooperation between the Office for the Protection of the Constitution and counterterrorism.
US-Election 2020 – Pre-Night Debate
On November 2, the Vienna Hub of the Young Transatlantic Initiative together with the Think-Tank Shabka and the Austrian Chapter of the Youth Atlantic Treaty Association (YATA) organized a Pre-Night Debate regarding the US-Election.
AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis took part and spoke about the transatlantic relations under President Donald Trump and the security policy implications of the upcoming US presidential election.
Salon Shabka – European Security and Defence: A story of progressing integration and the Space Race 2.0
On October 9th, 2020, AIES Research Fellows Sofia Maria Satanakis and Christoph Schwarz were invited by the Viennese Think & Do Tank "Shabka", to share their insights about the latest developments in the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU (CSDP) and linkages to recent trends of an increasingly militarized space domain, as elaborated in the recent AIES Fokus Paper "Space Race 2.0".
Although ample progress in the past decade has been made in the area of CSDP, the message was, further integration and coordination among EU member states is essential for the EU to become a respected and capable actor in global affairs. Regarding space, the bottom line was that while Europe needs to better protect its own space assets from hostile interference, it is of utmost importance for the EU to advocate for and establish new treaties governing the peaceful use of outer space in the 21st century.
Migration Workshop Greece 2020
Sofia Maria Satanakis, AIES Research Fellow, participated in a two-day workshop on migration in Thessaloniki.
The Multilateral Dialogue KAS office in Vienna organized for the second time an expert workshop on migration and border security on October 19 and 20. Among other things, current migration developments, third-country agreements and external border protection as well as the asylum and migration pact proposed by the EU Commission were discussed. Furthermore, the most important challenges were pointed out and potential solutions were explained.
Will Joe Biden be the next US President?
On the 13th of October 2020, Velina Tchakarova invited Stanley R. Sloan, Founding Director of the "Atlantic Community Initiative", to discuss if former Vice-President Joe Biden could become the next US president.
They acknowledged that, according to the polls, Biden was leading in all key states. The polls also suggested that Biden had a winning margin in both, the popular vote as well as the electoral college. They further discussed the likely positive impact of a Biden win on the transatlantic relationship and NATO, as well as his handling of other emerging actors, such as China.
Will Joe Biden be the next US President?
On the 13th of October 2020, Velina Tchakarova invited Stanley R. Sloan, Founding Director of the "Atlantic Community Initiative", to discuss if former Vice-President Joe Biden could become the next US president.
They acknowledged that, according to the polls, Biden was leading in all key states. The polls also suggested that Biden had a winning margin in both, the popular vote as well as the electoral college. They further discussed the likely positive impact of a Biden win on the transatlantic relationship and NATO, as well as his handling of other emerging actors, such as China.
Why can Trump still win the Elections?
On October 5th, 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Jan Surotchak, Senior Director at the "International Republican Institute", to explore why Trump could still win the US elections.
One of the key messages of the conversation was that the political party systems that have formed across the transatlantic region and the European continent over the last 70 years are slowly breaking down. This phenomenon is characteristic of all societies. The election of Trump as president 4 years ago, reflected the dissatisfaction of the American people with the political and economic situation at that time. Jan Surotchak predicts that due to the large core electorate President Trump will be re-elected in the upcoming presidential election.
Korea-Europe Next Generation Policy Expert Network
Michael Zinkanell, AIES Research Fellow, participated at a three-day online conference elaborating the EU-Korea relations. For the fourth year, the renowned Think Tank Chatham House and the Korea Foundation organised the "Korea-Europe Next Generation Policy Expert Network". Against the background of the political implications of the COVID-19 crisis and the growing rise of nationalism, the theme of the 2020 forum emphasised sustainable international cooperation.
A total of 15 European policy experts participated at the interactive workshops and discussions and seized the opportunity to discuss future means of cooperation and to deepen their knowledge on EU – East Asia relations in general and EU – South Korea relations in particular. Amongst the senior experts and lecturers was the former EU Ambassador to South Korea Michael Reiterer.
Will the USA remain the global number one? AIES Talk with Roland Freudenstein
On July 2, 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the director of the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies, Roland Freudenstein, to the digital AIES Talk to discuss the future of the USA.
Relevant topics of the AIES Talk included the main characteristics of the USA as a superpower as well as the conflict with China and its further development after the presidential election in November 2020. The strengths and weaknesses of Joe Biden and Donald Trump, and their respective chances of winning the election were discussed as well. In this context, the factor of disinformation in the election campaign and the corona pandemic was also addressed.
Security after COVID-19
Sofia Maria Satanakis and Michael Zinkanell discussed the Covid-19 security implication with Lukas Wank, co-director of the Think Tank Shabka. Relevant topics of the discussion included the relationship between the European Union and NATO and its future prospects. The second central topic concerned the challenge of cybersecurity on international and national level as well as the security impacts of disinformation campaigns and fake news.
Deceive and Disrupt: Disinformation as an Emerging Cybersecurity Challenge
AIES Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell, MA. invited Arthur Liederkerke, MA. to a digital conversation on cyber security on 07/07/2020. Mr. Liederkerke, MA. emphasized that the targeted dissemination of disinformation has become a powerful tool to significantly influence individuals as well as organizations due to increasing digitalization. The mass of information disseminated through digital networks makes it difficult to control what is published and to distinguish correct information from disinformation. Threat actors use this to their advantage and therefore increasingly employ disinformation campaigns. For this reason, combating disinformation campaigns plays a central role in digital security.
This talk was based on the AIES study:
Deceive and Disrupt: Disinformation as an Emerging Cybersecurity Challenge
Can Germany lead Europe out of the crisis?
On 25.06.2020 AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited former Federal Minister Head of the Office Multilateral Dialogue of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Vienna Dipl. Ing. Claudia Crawford to a digital conversation about Germany's role in crisis management. Dipl. Ing. Crawford emphasized that Germany, among others, plays an important role in the EU through its Council Presidency and, in order to be able to cope with the crisis, must rely on a pan-European strategy that strengthens the cohesion of the member states. In addition, the Brexit deal plays a central role in crisis management, as it will have a significant impact on future cooperation between the European Union and the United Kingdom, including in the area of security policy.
AIES Talk with Univ. Prof. Dr. Christoph Badelt
On June 18th 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the director of the Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO) Univ. Prof. Dr. Christoph Badelt via video conference to the digital AIES Talk to discuss the economic crisis after Covid-19.
We are in middle of the most difficult situation since the Second World War - in a unique, new kind of crisis that has never hit us in this form before. Due to its size, coverage and cause, we cannot rely on historical facts and data, we cannot determine when we will experience an economic recovery. The measures taken by the Austrian Government, as well as by the European Union were discussed; both speakers came to the same conclusion: a single nation state cannot cope with an economic crisis of this dimension. Christoph Badelt criticised the lack of European solidarity in this respect, looked at past political decisions and explained how an economic future could look like after Covid-19.
Strategic Partnership China and Russia – AIES Talk with Dr. Walter Feichtinger
On June 10, 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the President of the Center for Strategic Analysis (CSA) Brigadier General (retd.) Dr. Walter Feichtinger to discuss the strategic partnership between China and Russia, which plays a crucial role in the field of security policy.
The partnership between Beijing and Moscow is built upon a shared rejection of the US-led global system. On the one hand, the cooperation between the two countries has, in recent years, gained not only in intensity, but also in diversity. On the other hand, structural tensions have emerged in the Sino-Russian relationship. In particular, Russia fears that it might lose influence on Central Asia to China.
AIES Talk – German Security Policy
On May 28th, 2020, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend hosted the member of the German Bundestag and former Federal Minister Christian Schmidt (CSU) for an interview to discuss European security policy from a German perspective. One of his key messages related to the need for Germany to assume a greater leadership role in Europe in terms of security policy. He also sees an increasing convergence of German and French positions in this area. Another important task is to strengthen the European pillar within NATO and to prepare NATO politically for future scenarios. Increased EU engagement would be needed above all in the Balkans and in Africa, because Europe would otherwise run the risk of leaving the field to other players.
Turkey and Europe – AIES Talk with Dr. Cengiz Günay
On 4 June 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the Vice-Director of the Austrian Institute for International Affairs (oiip), Dr. Cengiz Günay, via video conference to the sixth digital AIES Talk to discuss Turkey and its relationship with Europe.
Relevant topics of the Talk included the relationship between Turkey and the European Union as well as the future course of the EU accession process. The changes in Turkish foreign policy, the country's domestic political orientation and the current coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the already weakened turkish economy were also discussed.
Geopolitical upheavals and Europe
On 20 May 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the former Austrian Foreign Minister, Dr. Karin Kneissl, via video conference to the digital AIES Talk to discuss the current geopolitical upheavals.
The talk focused on the European Union and its relationship with China, the USA as well as the African continent. In addition, Karin Kneissl made it clear that Europe's relationship with China has changed and that the conflict with the USA will become even more critical. Furthermore, they discussed the role of the European Union in the Middle East and its efforts to be more active at geopolitical level. In summary, Karin Kneissl sees the European Union as a background actor on the world stage and would prefer that the EU clearly defines its common interests and act with a common language in geopolitics.
The crisis in Libya and its consequences for Europe – AIES Talk with Wolfgang Pusztai
On May 14, 2020 Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited the Chairman of the Advisory Board of the "National Council on U.S. Libya Relations" and AIES Senior Advisor, Wolfgang Pusztai, for the third digital AIES Talk to discuss the crisis in Libya and its consequences for Europe. The development of the crisis in Libya is of great importance for the security of South-Eastern Europe, particularly due to the country's geostrategic location.
AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and AIES Senior Advisor Wolfgang Pusztai
At the centre of the current conflict in Libya lies the historically founded de facto division of the country into an Eastern and Western part. On the one hand there is the internationally recognised government - the Government of National Accord (GNA) - which is supported by militias and on the other hand the Libyan National Army (LNA) under the command of Khalifa Haftar. The conflict has taken on another international dimension through the support that both parties receive from different regional powers, such as Turkey and Russia. Lastly, this digital AIES talk has also touched upon the future role of the EU in Libya's stabilisation process.
France’s role in the European Union – AIES Talk with Dr. Hans Dieter Schweisgut
On May 7, 2020, Dr. Werner Fasslabend invited Ambassador retd. and Secretary General of the „Austro-French Centre for Rapprochement in Europe", Dr. Hans Dieter Schweisgut, via video conference for the second digital AIES Talk, to discuss the role of France in the European Union.
Relevant subjects of the AIES Talk were, among others, the proposals of President Macron for the reorganization of the European Union. According to experts, the implementation of some of Macron's ambitious visions will take up to 10 years. The current crisis requires a revision of the budget allocation and the associated shift in priorities. The Franco-German relationship is currently regaining attention and a central point is security and defense policy, since France is the major military power of the Union – a striking difference to Germany can be seen here.
The European Union after Covid-19 – AIES Talk with Prof. Dr. Martin Selmayr
Foto: Europäische Kommission
On the 28th of April 2020, AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend hosted the EU's Permanent Representative to Austria, Prof. Dr. Martin Selmayr, in a video conference for the first-ever digital AIES Talk. The topic of discussion was the current state of the European Union in the face of the coronavirus crisis, as well as future prospects for the time beyond.
The central themes were the measures taken by the EU to combat the crisis, as well as the further road map to accomplish the revival of the European economy. Above all, Selmayr praised the excellent cooperation between the EU Member States, which, despite some initial difficulties, have decided to act together in this difficult time. Important issues, such as climate protection, digitization and the advancement of the CFSP/CSDP should not be lost out of sight despite the ongoing health crisis, the former Secretary General of the EU Commission explained. The EU must also ensure stability in the European neighborhood, which is why aid, especially for the African continent, is desperately needed.
Coping with Coronavirus – Euro-Gulf Perspectives
On 19 March 2020, a conference was held online on "Coping with Coronavirus - Euro-Gulf Perspectives". AIES Institute Director Velina Tchakarova participated as a panelist. Despite the current situation due to the COVID-19 virus, the panelists had a stirring discussion on the global impact of the virus.
"We will probably witness the next great shock to the global system, only comparable to the global financial crisis in 2007/8, if not even worse in terms of implications."
– Velina Tchakarova
Read the full report of the conference at:
Further reports on the global impact of Covid-19 and other issues can also be found on Velina Tchakarova's blog, at: medium.com/@vtchakarova/the-global-covid-19-system-crisis-d8d803fade50
The Geopolitical Impact of Nord Stream 2.0 on European Energy Security
On February 26, 2020, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES), the Centre for Democratic Integrity (CDI) and the Vienna School of International Studies organized a panel discussion on "The Geopolitical Impact of Nord Stream 2.0 on European Energy Security".
Prof. Dr. Johannes Pollak (Director at Webster University), Dr. Andreas Umland (Senior Fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation), Ana Otilia Nutu (Policy Analyst on energy and infrastructure at Expert Forum) and Dr. Anton Shekhovtsov (External Lecturer at the University of Vienna) discussed different perspectives of Nord Stream 2.0 and highlighted positive and negative aspects of the project. Several essential questions were raised about the intentions and goals of the construction of the pipeline, its impact on the economies of several states affected by the project as well as its contribution to energy security.
Drifting Apart? Why the United States needs Europe – And what can be done now
Panel discussion on the future of the transatlantic relations
On March 6, 2020, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized a panel discussion at the Vienna School of International Studies, in which the current dynamics and challenges of the transatlantic relationship were extensively discussed. Moderated by AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova, the three speakers, Sascha Arnautovic (AIES Associate Fellow), Jakob Wiedekind (Research Fellow at the Leibniz University Hannover) and political advisor Andreas Schwenk shared the findings of their most recent publications on the European-American relationship.
The current crisis in the transatlantic relationship should be seen as an opportunity for Europe to increasingly emancipate itself in the field of security and defense, but without striving to be completely decoupled from the United States in the long run. Global challenges of the 21st century such as migration, climate change or the digital revolution can only be mastered in European-American lockstep.
Vision and Reality – Where is Europe headed?
On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the accession of the Republic of Austria to the EU, the AIES invited former Austrian Federal Chancellor Dr. Wolfgang Schüssel to give a lecture on "Vision and Reality - Where is Europe headed?" on February 17, 2020, at the Vienna School of International Studies.
The former Chancellor gave an overview of the most pressing issues and challenges the European Union is currently facing. Among the focal points of his speech were structural questions concerning the EU, especially regarding further EU integration and enlargement policy. He also discussed the EU's emancipation efforts in the field of security and defense, which will have an impact on how the Union deals with important global actors such as China or Russia. With a view to the future, the correct handling of digitalization played a vital role in his remarks.
Geopolitics in the Middle East and Europe’s Role
On February 5, 2020, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy invited AIES Senior Associate Fellows Robert Cutler and Michael Tanchum, as well as Mitchell Belfer, President and Director of Research at the Euro-Gulf Information Center (EGIC), to speak about geopolitics in the MENA region and Central Asia. The event was moderated by Velina Tchakarova, AIES Head of Institute. The main focus was placed on current geopolitical strategies of regional and international powers and the role European powers currently play or could play in the future. Changing geopolitical dynamics and the fact that conflicts in the MENA region are reaching the southern border of Europe make it more important than ever to draft new European policies that enable Europe to act based on its own interests.
Raisina Dialogue 2020
In January 2020, the Raisina Dialogue was organized for the fifth time by the Indian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) in New Delhi. AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend again took part in the conference and participated in one of the senior-level panel discussions.
Dr. Werner Fasslabend, President of the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy, attended for the third time the Raisina Dialouge in the Indian capital New Delhi. With over 2,000 high-ranking participants and guests from politics, business and civil society, the most pressing issues of our time were discussed with sophisticated competence and expertise at the largest multilateral conference in India.
At the panel discussion on "Competing Nationalisms, Universal Norms: Street Power in 21st Century Diplomacy", Dr. Werner Fasslabend shared his views on this exciting issue with the world public along with other experts such as the Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs or the Deputy Foreign Minister of Iran Seyed Kazem Sajjadpour.
"The rapid speed of globalization and digitalization, as well as a deterioration of familiar structures in our communities, is creating a global sentiment of uneasiness and a search for security." – Dr. Fasslabend
Werner Fasslabend with India's Minister of External Affairs Subrahmanyam Jaishankar
AIES 23rd European Forum
The AIES 23rd European Forum took place on November 8, 2019 at the Vienna School of International Studies and was organised together with the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies and the Political Academy of the Austrian People's Party. The event was supported by the Vienna School of International Studies, the State of Lower Austria, the Federal Ministry for Defence, the Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs as well as the European Security and Defence College. The topic of the European Forum was "Europe's Role in the Face of Increasing Global Power Shifts" and the hall was fully occupied by more than 150 guests.
AIES-President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and the Director of the Vienna School of International Studies Ambassador Dr. Emil Brix pointed in their welcoming speeches towards the challenges of European security and invited the visitors to join the debate and develop new ideas about Europe's role in the international system.
The Federal Minister of Defence Thomas Starlinger provided an insistent warning about hybrid threats towards Austria and the EU, which can only be repelled comprehensively and within a system of international cooperation and coordination. Therefore, it is essential for Austria to engage more closely within the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) of the EU in order to ensure European prosperity and sovereignty together with EU-partners. As a result, an increase in military spending is essential and inevitable for Austria.
Karoline Edtstadler, Member of the European Parliament, condemned the rise of extremism and anti-Semitism in Europe and praised the increasing public interest in EU-politics. She demanded a return to basic European values and more reciprocal understanding between Europeans. The former speaker of the European Parliament and Chairman of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung Dr. Hans-Gert Pöttering was pleased by the Austrian engagement in the CSDP and by its support for the accession of central and eastern European countries to the EU. The EU-Ambassador to Austria and former Secretary-General of the European Commission Dr. Martin Selmayr gave deep insights into the decision-making processes of the EU: over the last five years the EU has developed into a serious geopolitical actor, and Europe's main capabilities in foreign policy rely on the attractiveness of the European project and its internal coherence.
In the following panel Hans Dietmar Schweisgut, former EU Ambassador to China, Jamie Shea, Professor of Strategic Studies and former NATO Director, Jolyon Howorth, Visiting Professor Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center and Roland Freudenstein, Policy Director at Wilfried Martens Centre, discussed the EU strategy towards China and Russia as well as the future of the CSDP and NATO.
The Foreign Policy of the U.S. Administration under Donald Trump
Peter Rough, a political expert at the Hudson Institute, elaborated on November 21 on the invitation of the U.S. Embassy Vienna in front of a full audience on the Foreign Policy of the U.S. Administration under Donald Trump, with a special focus on the Middle East. AIES head Velina Tchakarova moderated the public event.
The Current State of EU-Russia Relations in Various Policy Areas
On 29 November 2019, the 3rd AIES-KFIBS Junior Conference for European and Security Policy researchers took place in Vienna. This year, the conference was held in cooperation with the office of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS) in Vienna under the title 'The EU-Russia Relations in Various Policy Areas'. The speakers examined a variety of topics, including the economic relations between the EU and Russia, the security relations in the Arctic region and an overview of European expertise on Russia.
Since 2017, the AIES in cooperation with the Cologne Forum for International Relations and Security Policy (KFIBS e.V.), has been organizing annual conferences on current European policy topics, primarily aimed at young academics. This initiative has been led by AIES Research Fellow Sofia M. Satanakis.
AIES presentations during the International Security Policy Summit 2019
AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova and AIES Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell held two lectures during the International Security Policy Summit 2019 in Vienna, organised by the World Youth Academy. While Velina Tchakarova presented global systems transformation, Michael Zinkanell focussed on the developments and challenges of the political EU-integration. After the presentations, the participating 25 young academics from various European countries and the United States had the opportunity to engage in an interactive debate with both AIES experts.
The AIES organised an ESDC-Training in cooperation with the AIT
Acting as a partner institute of the European Security and Defence College (ESDC), the AIES organised an ESDC-Training together with the Austrian Institute for Technology (AIT) with the title "Infrastructures in the Context of Digitalisation". AIES Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell and AIES Senior Advisor Ruth Gursch-Adam attended the three-day training course. Developing preventive and reactive measures to enhance the security of critical infrastructures against cyber-attacks was the key topic during the interactive training course.
Annual EuroDefense Network-Meeting in Bucharest
AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell attended the annual EuroDefense Network-Meeting, which took place in Bucharest, Romania. The AIES acts as the Austrian partner institute of the EuroDefense-Network, represented by Dr. Fasslabend and Mr. Zinkanell who hold the Board positions. The EuroDefense-Network was founded in 1994 as a pan-European initiative to promote and enhance the public discourse on the European security and defence. The current developments in the field of the Common Security and Defence Policy as well as new security challenges posed by cyber-security were discussed during this year's network-meeting. The AIES will host the upcoming annual meeting, which will take place during the second half of 2020 in Vienna.
NATO at 70: Old Dilemmas, New Security Challenges
On the 22nd of October 2019, the International Affairs and Foreign Policy Institute, INCIPE in collaboration with the Economic Forum and with the sponsorship of the Spanish Ministry of Defence organized an international conference on 'NATO at 70: Old Dilemmas, New Security Challenges' in Madrid, Spain. The AIES was represented by Sofia Maria Satanakis who talked about Europe as the backbone of NATO.
Thinkers Night: Vienna and the Silk Road – a threat or a blessing?
Fotos: Fachhochschule des BFI Wien
What impact will the mega-project New Silk Road have on the Austrian? How is China influencing the Austrian economy and logistics through its infrastructure initiative?
These and more questions were discussed with top-ranking panelists at the last big Thinkers Night of this year.
- Keynote: Florian Krendl, Co-Founder of "Europe goes Silk Road
- Moderation: Bernd Vasari (Wiener Zeitung)
On the podium:
- Prof. Dr. Andreas Breinbauer, Rector of the FH of the BFI Vienna and Head of the Logistics and Transportation Management course at the FH of the BFI Vienna
- Thomas Kargl, Member of the Board, ÖBB Rail Cargo Austria
- Mag.a Marlies Stubits, MBA, MSc, Special Representative for International Financial Institutions, Austrian National Bank
- Velina Tchakarova, M.A., Director of the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy
Discussion with students from Nanjing
The Austrian Study Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution Schaining (ASPR) recently organised an interactive discussion with Austrian experts and Chinese students from the University of Nanjing, in which Michael Zinkanell (AIES Research Fellow) participated.
During the academic exchange, the Austrian experts debated relevant topics of international politics and economy together with the students who came from the fields of political science, economics, and international relations. The strategic partnership between Austria and China as well as the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU were at the core of the discussions.
"Rethinking Security and Defence
Fotos & Text: LVAk / Ref Medien
On October 17, a panel discussion on "Rethinking Security and Defence" took place at the National Defence Academy on the occasion of the anniversary celebration "20 Years of the Institute for Peacebuilding and Conflict Management" (IFK). Moderated by Brigadier Walter Feichtinger, the panel discussion included Brigadier Philipp Eder, Head of the Military Strategy Department, Christoph Fälbl, cabaret artist and actor, Stefanie Haring, IFK-Alumna, journalist Friedrich Orter and Velina Tchakarova, Head of the Austria Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES), who discussed current security issues and threats. The main topics were the subjective perception of security, the involvement of civil society in security-related issues, the interconnectedness of the international community, as well as the perception of wars and climate change.
AIES Fact-Finding-Mission China: Part III Shanghai
During their stay in Shanghai, the last destination of the 11-day long Fact-Finding-Mission to China, the academic exchange with universities was of main importance to Dr. Werner Fasslabend and Michael Zinkanell. During extensive discussions, with experts from the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, the Fudan University, and the Shanghai Institute for European Studies amongst others, special emphasis was put on the characteristics of the EU-China relations as well as the role of China in current geopolitical developments. Additionally, the delegation visited the mouth of the Yangtze river, which flows into the East China Sea in the north of Shanghai's centre, giving the city its particular geostrategic location.
Alpbach dialogue in Vienna
As part of the Alpbach Dialogues, AIES Institute Director Velina Tchakarova and Austrian military Brigadier Walter Feichtinger discussed possible future scenarios for Europe in a multi polar world between Russia, China and the United States. The debate was moderated by the editor of "The Diplomat", Franz Stefan Gady in a hall filled to the last chair in the Vienna Konzerthaus. Feichtinger outlined the military-technical and strategic trends of this decade and Tchakarova focused on the "real political" decision-making basis and different geopolitical perspectives. Both pleaded for strengthening the lately toothless Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP).
iSCAN Kick-Off Event
On October 15, 2019 the official launch of the International Security and Conflict Analysis Network (iSCAN) took place in Vienna.
AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis, introduced iSCAN as a new partner of the institute and Billy Batware and his team talked in depth about the origins and objectives of iSCAN.
Lecture on the Indo-Pacific Region
Dr. Nikolaus Scholik, Ullrich Tiedt, Regionalkreisvorsitzende der Clausewitz-Gesellschaft
Dr. Nikolaus Scholik, AIES Senior Advisor, presented the current geopolitical maritime developments with focus on the Asian region at the Clausewitz-Gesellschaft Hamburg.
The lecture entitled "The Indo-Pacific Region – The Hotspot of the 21st Century" encompassed the increasing geostrategic relevance of the maritime area spreading from the Indian Ocean to the Western Pacific and analysed the emerging political actors in the region. Questions concerning the leadership in the Indo-Pacific and the strategic interests of single stakeholders – all topics of great importance and actuality for global security – were scrutinised against this backdrop.
Visit to China: Part II Nanjing
Fotos © Peter Buchas
During the second research destination in China, the AIES team, consisting of Werner Fasslabend and Michael Zinkanell, led in-depth discussions in Nanjing with representatives from the University, including experts from the Institute of Global Governance. The main emphasis was laid on the current EU-China relations, in order to elaborating the complex political tensions as well as stressing the great potential for economic cooperation. As a result, the Chinese 17+1 Initiative and the Belt and Road Initiative were at the centre of the dialogues. Furthermore, the institutional background and academic expertise of the AIES were presented, focussing on the Think Tank structure, the analytical research activities, and the international network of the Institute.
ETNC Meeting in Den Haag
AIES Director Velina Tchakarova and AIES Associate Fellow Adam Urosevic participated in the European Think Tank Network on China's (ETNC) semi-annual meeting from 30.09 to 01.10 at the Clingendael Institute in The Hague, Netherlands.
The key focus of the two-day meeting were discussions on the upcoming 5th annual ETNC report. ETNC has published an annual report since 2015, reviewing the state of Europe-China relations focusing on one specific topic each year. Coinciding with the People's Republic of China's 70th anniversary, discussions ranged from Hong Kong and the social credit systems to EU member states' China strategies (or lack thereof) and national 5G debates.
Bled Strategic Forum in Slovenia
AIES Associate Fellow Adam Urosevic attended the Bled Strategic Forum from the 30 August to 3 September 2019 in Ljubljana/Bled, Slovenia.
Lively discussions were held amongst participants and notable speakers primarily on the return of Geopolitics, though also on topics such as democratisation, the advancement of human rights, sustainable development, women's empowerment, counter-terrorism and addressing climate change. The "fireside chat" on governance issues in the Amazon rainforest with H.E. Ms María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, President of the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly, were widely considered a highlight of the Forum.
Adam Urosevic was further invited to moderate a working group that aimed at formulating policy recommendations on Cyber Security education, which were then presented to H.E. Dr. Jernej Pikalo, Slovenian Minister of Education, Science and Sport.
Balkans Summer University in North Macedonia
AIES Associate Fellow Adam Urosevic was invited by the Centre International de Formation Europeenne (CIFE) to lecture at their Balkans Summer University, held from 9 to 14 September 2019 at the University St Kliment Ohridski in North Macedonia. The programme was attended by approximately 20 students from eight different European states.
Adam Urosevic held lectures on the challenges the European Commission faces in the Western Balkans' rule of law reforms as well as on the development of regional cooperation in the region. He further provided workshops for students on writing job applications and conducted their final exams. Other lectures covered topics such as multilateral economic and environmental governance and the role of technology in the Western Balkans' insurance market.
Visit to China
At the beginning of September 2019, AIES-President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and AIES Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell visited the People's Republic of China to conduct a fact-finding mission. There were several main objectives of the visit: to experience the rapid economical, political, military and social developments and to analyse China's international role as well as the EUChina relations. The visit was accompanied by Dr. Walter Feichtinger, director of the Institute for Peace Support and Conflict Management (IFK) at the National Defence Academy in Vienna, and by Chinaexpert Peter Buchas. During the eleven days trip to the three cities of Beijing, Nanjing and Shanghai, the delegation met more than 55 persons in several discussion, workshops and presentations.
In Beijing a meeting with representatives of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) took place to debate the backgrounds of political defined roles in international relations and impending sources of conflict in Central-Asia. Additionally, potential common projects were discussed. Furthermore, there were several intensive exchanges with Chinese think tanks, the Chinese National Defence University as well as a meeting with the Austrian Ambassador Friedrich Stift.
EU Training on CSDP in Ottawa, Canada
On the 24th of September, the EU Policy and Outreach Partnership in Canada organized a training on 'EU Security and Defense' at Global Affairs Canada HQ in Ottawa. AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis talked about the security policy architecture in Europe, the current state of affairs and the relations with NATO. The training was attended by GAC employees, officials from the Department of National Defence, Public Safety Canada, and the RCMP.
Why Fiscal and Monetary Policy are at a Dead End
On September 23rd, the AIES organized a public event with the title "No Exit: Why Fiscal and Monetary Policy are at a Dead End as Markets Hang in the Balance Implications for Europe" with the financial expert and bestseller-author James Rickards at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.
AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend emphasized the ongoing securitisation of financial and monetary policy in international relations. Jim Rickards offered an impressive analysis of the potential fatal flaws of our current global financial system and highlighted the crucial role of gold for the future. The event concluded with a Q&A-session moderated by AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova and a reception and a book sales of Jim Rickards latest bestseller.
he Future of Transatlantic Relations
On September 20th 2019, the Austria Institute for European and Security Policy organized a public event on "The Future of Transatlantic Relations – Implications for the EU and NATO" in cooperation with Foundation Institute for Eastern Studies in Warsaw at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. The speakers on the panel were Mr. Stanley Sloan (Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States and Senior Fellow at AIES), Dorota Kafara (Regional Programme Manager, Foundation Institute for Eastern Studies in Warsaw, Poland) and Mr. Krševan Antun Dujmović (Research Fellow, Institute for Development and International Relations in Zagreb, Croatia). The panel was moderated by Dr. Werner Fasslabend (AIES President and Former Defense Minister of Austria).
The main issues debated on the event were the deepening gap between the transatlantic partners and possible approaches to solve those concerns. The role of the Trump administration was discussed as well as the commitment of the European allies. Additionally, Mr. Sloan presented several future scenarios on the future of NATO and a broad threat analysis to discuss several models of USleadership in the 21st century.
Eastern Partnership Summer School in Minsk
AIES Associate Fellow Adam Urosevic participated in the 2nd Eastern Partnership Summer School in Minsk, Belarus. Co-organized by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung's Belarus office and the Belarus National Academy of Sciences' History Institute, the Summer School brought 24 young professionals from the EaP states (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine) as well as from five EU member states (Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, Hungary and Poland) together.
From the 19th until the 23rd of August, the young professionals, along with prominent diplomats and Belarusian researchers, intensively discussed not only the mixed results of the first 10 years of the Eastern Partnership initiative, but also its future. Though agreement on the need and importance of the initiative prevailed, lively discussions were held on the tensions between a transformative value-based approach and a pragmatic security-based approach. Further thought was given to whether greater flexibility would come at the detriment of some EaP states (e.g. splitting the countries into an "EaP 3+3"). An entire day was dedicated to the "elephant in the room", Russia's relations to both the EU and the six EaP states. It was particularly interesting to note that debates frequently centered around China as much as Russia.
The EaP Summer School culminated in participants proposing concrete projects, which they had developed over the past four days, to the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung. These included proposals to increase EaP visibility in southern EU member states; launch an EaP strategic communication campaign centered around virtual personalities on social media; and the creation of a regional research network to foster independent China expertise.
How Europe works
In mid-September 2019 the Robert Schuman Institute together with the Robert Schuman Foundation and the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung organized an Introductory Seminar on 'How Europe works' for young professionals in Priština, Kosovo.
AIES research fellow Sofia M. Satanakis, M.E.S. talked about the foreign and security policy architecture in Europe and the EU Accession and Enlargement Process.
The Belt and Road Initiative – Impacts on Southeast Asia and Central Eastern Europe
On 5 September, researchers from the Central European Institute of Asian Studies (CEIAS), the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) and Sinophone Borderlands - Interaction at the Edges (Research Project of the Palacký University Olomouc) met with a delegation from Zhejiang University, a top 3 ranked university in China. The meeting took place at the AIES in Vienna. Discussed were the impacts of the Belt and Road Initiative on Southeast Asia and Central Eastern Europe and possible cooperation between the institutions.
AIES’ contribution to the workshop “A New Player in International Peace Operations: China”
The AIES contributed to a workshop organised by the Institute for Peace Support and Conflict Management (IFK) titled "A New Player in International Peace Operations: China". The workshop, which took place at the National Defence Academy in Vienna in July, was organised as an initiative of the IFK Head of Institute Dr. Walter Feichtinger.
AIES Senior Advisor Dr. Nikolaus Scholik und AIES Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell presented their remarks focussing on the maritime security in the South China Sea and the European perspectives regarding China's contribution to international peace operations. Besides representatives from the Austrian Ministries of Defence and Foreign Affairs, the interdisciplinary workshop was also attended by private research institutions and experts from academia. The discussion focused on how actors such as the UN, NATO, US, and the EU perceive China's increased involvement in peace operations and on China's overall strategy in this regard.
Budapest European Agora
AIES is exchanging thoughts and ideas on the future of Europe
In mid July 2019, AIES Researchers Michael Zinkanell and Adam Urosevic participated in the Budapest European Agora, a gathering where 130 young Europeans had the opportunity to exchange ideas and engage with European leaders.
Highlights from the four day Agora included a panel with former President of the European Commission and Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi, discussing the challenges and opportunities facing the European Union, as well as a workshop with Executive Director of the International Trade Centre, Arancha Gonzalez, confronting the challenges of Europe's democratic future.
Other topics addressed within the Agora's many workshops, panels and debates included the future of data protection and energy policy in the EU, the challenges of diversity within the union, the shaping of a European public narrative, and economic inequalities within the European social model.
Youth discussions – European Climate and Security Policy
On 9 April 2019, Ponto, the Grassroots Think Tank on European and Foreign Policy, together with Vienna's International Debating Society organized a workshop for young Europeans at the Permanent Representation of the European Commission in Austria.
In the morning session the students had the opportunity to follow keynote speeches from AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis on European Security Policy and from Adriana Bascone and Ansgar Fellendorf on Climate Policy.
In the afternoon, the students were able to apply the newly acquired knowledge during a training session.
Meeting in Vienna
Velina Tchakarova, Dr. Werner Fasslabend, Vladimir Norov, Sherzod Asadov
In the beginning of July, Sherzod Asadov, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan to Austria and Vladimir Norov, Secretary-General of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) visited Dr. Werner Fasslabend at the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy in Vienna. Together they discussed possibilities for cooperation between Europe, Central Asia and China on the issues of security and connectivity.
EU-India relations and the security situation in South Asia
On 2 July 2019, the AIES organized a public discussion about 'EU-India relations and the security situation in South Asia' with Britta Petersen (Senior Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation) at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien. Ms. Petersen spoke, among other things, about the current government and India's ambitions, the most important milestones in its relationship with Europe as well as India's attitude towards China and Russia.
The Role of EU Law: Insights from Israel, Morocco and the Russian Federation
On the 26th of June 2019, the AIES together with the Vienna School of International Studies organized a panel discussion on 'The role of EU Law in shaping external relations and projecting normative power'.
The invited experts, Patrick Müller, professor of European Studies at the Vienna School of International Studies, Charles Anthony Shamas, Senior partner and co-founder of the MATTIN Group, and AIES Senior Advisor Nikolaus Scholik allowed an interesting debate on the role of EU law as a normative power, particularly reflecting on the policy of conditionality of the EU and whether the Union's normative power could counterbalance its lack of "hard power" compared to other global actors.
Europe Goes Silk Road
On the 3rd of June 2019, the AIES in collaboration with the University of Vienna, Department of History organized a panel discussion aiming to introduce the project «Europe goes Silk Road». More details under: https://www.europegoessilkroad.eu
As an honored guest, Bruno Maçães, former Portuguese Secretary of State for European Affairs, delivered an interactive speech on the Eurasian concept, the effects of China's Belt and Road initiative for Europe and the importance of multicultural awareness.
International Security Policy Summit 2019
From 30 May to 1 June 2019, the World Youth Academy in cooperation with the AIES organized this year's International Security Policy Summit in Vienna.
AIES Research Fellows Sofia Maria Satanakis and Michael Zinkanell as well as Associate Fellow Lawrence Kettle held presentations regarding the various challenges for EU integration, including the current state of CSDP, European responses to cyber security and the ongoing Brexit debate.
ETNC Network Meeting in Greece
On the 13th and 14th of May 2019, the ETNC Network members were hosted by IIER (the Institute of International Economic Relations) in Athens for their half-year meeting to discuss the upcoming 5th annual report of the network. On May 15, ETNC members met the management of the Piraeus Port Authority and had a guided tour around the facilities. AIES was invited to present its candidacy for a membership and participated in all meetings.
EU and Eastern Europe
On May 8, 2019 the AIES organized an Expert-Workshop on the Eastern Partnership titled 'The Strategic Realignment of the EU policy towards Eastern Europe. The Association Agreements with Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine.'
The invited experts, Hennadiy Maksak (Head of the Foreign Policy Council 'Ukrainian Prism'), Ukraine, Thornike Gordadze (Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences-Po); French Institute of Higher National Defence Studies), France/Georgia, and Mihai Mogildea (Institute for European Policies and Reforms (IPRE)), Moldova, elaborated on the current developments regarding Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova and made recommendations considering the Association Agreements of the EU with the three countries.
Security related hotspots in the Middle East, North Africa and the Indo-Pacific area
AIES Associate Fellow Dr. Nikolaus Scholik, AIES Präsident Dr. Werner Fasslabend, Bgdr Dr. Walter Feichtinger und MSc Wolfgang Pusztai.
On May 20, 2019 the AIES organized a panel discussion regarding 'Security related hotspots in the Middle East, North Africa and the Indo-Pacific area' at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien.
The invited speakers, Walter Feichtinger, Wolfgang Pusztai and Nikolaus Scholik presented the most important crisis zones in the Middle East, North Africa and the Indo-Pacific area, entered into detailed discussions with the audience and thus provided a better overview of the current situation.
Challenges for Italy and Europe
Fotos: Diplomatische Akademie
On May 17th 2019, the AIES organized a public event with the former Foreign Minister of Italy and former Vice-President of the European Commission, Franco Frattini on the 'Challenges for Italy and Europe' at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien.
Mr. Frattini talked among others about the current political situation as well as the lack of strong leadership within the European Union, the development of the CSDP and Italy's evolvement since the creation of the EU. The migration problem and the rising populist forces in Europe were also mentioned.
Meeting with the Ambassador of South Sudan in Turkey
Last week Mr Majok Guandong, Ambassador of the Republic of South Sudan in Ankara, visited Dr. Werner Fasslabend at the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy in Vienna. Together they discussed the future and the current challenges for South Sudan. Additionally, a potential contribution from the AIES to the inner Sudanese peace process and the post-conflict reconstruction was elaborated.
AIES discusses the current developments in Sudan
Dr. Werner Fasslabend, AIES President, met with the Ambassador of the Republic of Sudan in Vienna, Mr Mirghani Abbaker Altayeb Bakhet, at a discussion organised together with the Austrian-Sudanese Association in April. Possible solutions to a peaceful development and positive future perspectives stood at the centre of the talks. For several years the AIES is intensively dealing with the developments in Sudan and directly participated at peace negotiations in the past.
Trends 2030 – Healthy growth for Europe. Findings from 15 years of eastward enlargement
Fotos © Alois Mock Institut
On April 25, Dr. Werner Fasslabend, AIES President, discussed the European developments of the last 15 years since the EU enlargement at a podium event organized by the Alois Mock Institute.
Werner Fasslabend stated that the EU eastward enlargement is proof that the immediate neighborhood is one of the most important factors for economic success. Even small and medium-sized companies can thrive well in nearby markets. As far as the enlargement policy towards the Western Balkans is concerned, stabilization of the Balkan countries is essential for long-term peace in the entire region. As a prospect for the future, Dr. Fasslabend would like to see more awareness for the situation in the Eastern European countries, which often have only a very short history as independent nation states and are thus faced with different political preconditions.
Populism and European Elections
Das Europäische Parlament in Straßburg. Foto: Pixabay
On 15 March 2019, a public discussion regarding populism and the forthcoming European elections took place at the European Commission Representation in Austria. EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy & Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn, former vice-president of the European Parliament Ulrike Lunacek, Prof. Karin Priester from the university of Münster, Prof. Karl Aiginger from the Policy Crossover Centre: Vienna – Europe and AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis talked about the European Parliament and its development over the years, the rising populism in certain EU member states as well as the need for a new European strategy to secure the European peace project.
Visit to Pakistan
From March 25 to March 28, 2019 Dr. Werner Fasslabend, AIES President, visited Pakistan on a research trip where he met with several representatives from government, research institutes, and civil society initiatives.
Together with Dr. Walter Feichtinger, Head of the Institute for Peace Support and Conflict Management and Dr. Peter Haider, Head of the Universal Peace Federation Austria, Dr. Fasslabend was welcomed by local institutes – most notably the Islamabad Policy Research Institute and the Institute for Strategic Studies Islamabad. In addition to various formal and informal discussions in Islamabad, Dr. Fasslabend also visited the Pakistan-controlled part of Kashmir, where he gained exclusive insights on the local civilian and humanitarian situation.
North Macedonia – the Balkan Success Story
Fotos: Christian Fahrngruber
On March 11, 2019, the AIES together with the Austrian Ministry of Defence organized a panel discussion with H.E. Radmila Shekerinska, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of the Republic of North Macedonia, at the National Defence Academy in Vienna. H.E. Radmila Shekerinska talked among others about the Agreement with Greece, the successful solution of the name dispute and presented important changes in her country over the last two years. She also talked about the regional situation in the Balkans with all its aspects and North Macedonia's accession to NATO.
Italy’s Role for European Security and Stability
On April 1, 2019, the AIES organized a public event with the former Prime Minister of Italy, Paolo Gentiloni, on 'Italy's Role for European Security and Stability' at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien.
Mr. Gentiloni talked among others about the current political situation in Italy, the country's ties with the European Union as well as the challenges the EU is facing nowadays. The migration problem and the upcoming elections for the European Parliament were also mentioned.
European Strategy: Deficits and Election Statements
On the 2nd of April 2019, the Department of Economics of the Vienna University of Economics and Business organized the Department-Café: a meeting of the department members which includes a keynote speech followed by a commentary and subsequent discussion. The idea behind this is a monthly exchange on current economic policy issues. This time, AIES Research Fellow Sofia M. Satanakis, M.E.S. and Prof. Karl Aiginger talked about the "European Strategy: Deficits and Election Statements". The main focus was on the European Parliament elections in May 2019 and how parties want to tackle the current challenges.
Round-Table Discussion with Ahmet Davutoğlu
On March 19th, 2019 the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) held a round-table discussion with Turkey's former Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Professor Dr. Ahmet Davutoğlu on the topic of future EU-Turkey relations.
After a keynote speech by Dr. Davutoğlu, the participants exchanged their viewpoints in an open discussion. In addition to representatives from the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defence, experts in the field of foreign and security policy as well as Austrian think tanks took part in the event. Topics such as migration, historical upheavals and their implications for the present, as well as the current political relations between the EU and Turkey, were focussed during the discussion.
Perspectives for Sustainable Peace and Development in the Horn of Africa
Together with the Universal Peace Federation and the permanent mission of Eritrea to the United Nations in Vienna, the AIES organised a conference on March 20, 2019, with the title "Perspectives for Sustainable Peace and Development in the Horn of Africa".
Dr. Werner Fasslabend, AIES President, initiated the discussion and emphasised the significance of the peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia. In addition to the AIES, various other international organisations were represented at the event, such as amongst others: the Horn of Africa Peace Initiative, Awethu Forum to promote African Unity in Diversity, United Nations Correspondents Association Vienna, Women's Federation for World Peace.
© US Embassy Vienna
On March 27, the CEO of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) Richard Fontaine discussed the "Transatlantic Partnership in an Era of Great Power Competition" at Amerika Haus. The discussion panel was moderated by AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova and organised with the support of the U.S. Embassy in Vienna. A wide range of issues were addressed such as the Great Powers Competition, the Trump Administration, the Transatlantic Relations and the Future of the Global Order to name a few.
China's Belt and Road Initiative
Sinophone is an academic project that introduces a new approach towards rising China. The approach is grounded in the dialogue between key regions bordering China. Sinophone organized an International Conference 'Economic and Strategic Impacts of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) on Central Eastern Europe, Central and Southeast Asia: Similarities and Differences' between 20 and 21 of March at the Palacky University Olomouc in Czech Republic. The main aim of this two-day conference is to compare the economic and strategic impacts of China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), introduced in 2013, on three different regions: Central Eastern Europe, Central and Southeast Asia. By comparing the Chinese strategies to promote and implement the BRI in these regions, similarities and distinctions of Beijing's BRI strategy towards different world regions will be highlighted. AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova and AIES Research Fellow Livia Benkova take part in the project Sinophone with written contributions and Velina Tchakarova took part in the two-days conference in Olomouc. Following the conference, a public panel on 'China's Belt and Road Initiative – Impacts on Europe and Asia' took place with the participation of AIES President Werner Fasslabend and other high-ranking officials. The launch of a new think tank CEIAS (Central European Institute of Asian Studies) was announced based on the cooperation of three institutional partners – the Department of the Asian Studies at the Palacky University in Olomouc, the Institute of Asian Studies (IAS) in Bratislava, Slovakia, and the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) in Vienna, Austria.
Research trip to Vietnam
Dr. Werner Fasslabend, AIES President, and Dr. Nikolaus Scholik, AIES Senior Advisor, visited Vietnam as part of a research trip during the beginning of March 2019. The main focus of the trip was on discussing the geostrategic relevance of Vietnam as one central actor in the South China Sea.
Additionally, the trip enhanced the institutional exchange and the scientific cooperation between the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam and the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy. The common ambitions were summarised in a Memorandum of Understanding, to formally establish a framework of future collaboration.
European Political Strategy Centre: TT27 Leadership Academy
© European Commission
Michael Zinkanell, AIES Research Fellow, participated at the TT27 Leadership Academy in Brussels from 19 to 22 of February 2019. Organised by the European Political Strategy Centre, the in-house think tank of the European Commission, the diverse programme aimed to establish a dynamic and EU-wide network of young experts, researchers, and leaders.
In total 27 representatives of European think tanks took part at the Leadership Academy, to jointly identify Europe's most pressing future challenges, resulting in the development of concrete recommendations and possible options for action. In this respect, multiple background discussions and meetings with high-ranking EU decision makers took place, such as with the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, Secretary General of the European Commission Martin Selmayr, EU-Commissioner Johannes Hahn, and Deputy Director General of Council of the European Union Jim Cloos amongst others. The final report including the compiled recommendations as well as further information on the Leadership Academy can be found via the following link:
Interdisciplinary Technology Talks
Velina Tchakarova, AIES Institutsleiterin
On 21./22. February 2019, the AIES in close cooperation with the Amt für Rüstung und Wehrtechnik (ARWT) hosted the annual Interdisciplinary Technology Talks where professionals from the defence and military sector presented the most recent technologies developed for ballistic missile defence. The experts discussed the different system capabilities of the United States, Russia, China and Europe.
Georgia, the European Union and NATO
On February 26, 2019, the AIES organized a public event with the Chairperson of the Parliament of Georgia, Irakli Kobakhidze on 'Georgia, the European Union and NATO' at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien. Mr. Kobakhidze talked about Georgia's challenging regional environment, its domestic development as well as the relations with Russia and the country's aspirations to become a member of the EU and NATO.
The Aircraft Carrier and Global Military Domination in the 21st Century
On 14 February 2019, Dr. Nikolaus Scholik, AIES Senior Advisor, delivered a sophisticated presentation to an interested public as well as professionals from the defence and military sector on the importance of aircraft carriers in the 21st century's struggle for global military dominance at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien.
Dr. Fasslabend, AIES Director, opened the event with a brief introduction on the increasing geopolitical relevance of the Indo-Pacific region, followed by Dr. Scholik, who focused his lecture on comparing the United States' and China's maritime strategy. Analysing military capabilities and scrutinising strategic instruments used for projecting power was at the centre of the presentation, which was rounded off by an in-depth questions and answers session.
Meeting with Professor Li from Nanjing University
On the occasion of researching the structure and composition of Austrian Think Tanks, Professor Gang Li, Director of the Center of Chinese Think Tank Studies and Evolution at Nanjing University, visited the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy on 11 February 2019.
Dr. Fasslabend, Dr. Scholik, and Mr Zinkanell welcomed Professor Li at the AIES and together they engaged in a profound and constructive conversation on the Think Tank scenes in China and Austria and the role Think Tanks play in advising political processes.
22nd Eurasian Economic Summit in Istanbul
On 6 and 7 February 2019, the 22nd Eurasian Economic Summit, featuring high ranking officials from nearly 40 countries as well as representatives from various international organisations, took place in Istanbul. AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend participated at the conference and held a presentation on the current situation in the Middle East.
Vienna Process 2019: Russia and the EU
Organised by the International Centre for Advanced and Comparative EU-Russia Research Vienna (ICEUR) and the International Institute for Peace (IIP), the Vienna Process took place for the eighth time on 4 and 5 February 2019. Under the theme of "Russia and the EU: Dialogue through Business and Civil Society Channels" the chances and prospects of enhancing the EU-Russia relations through constructive dialogues were discussed. AIES President Dr. Werner Fasslabend and Research Fellow Michael Zinkanell joined the conference.
The annual 3C conference took place once again at the Peace Castle Schlaining on the subject of "Peace, Security, and Development" on 30 and 31 January 2019. Organised by the Federal Ministry of Defence, the Federal Ministry of Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, and the Austrian Study Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution a fruitful discussion was enabled between the governmental representatives, civil society think-tanks, as well as non-governmental organisations in the field of development cooperation and peace building. Based on the 3C concept (coordination, complementarity, and coherence) topics such as the results of Austria's EU Council Presidency, the implementation of SDG 16, the relations between the EU and African countries, and projects in the area of peace and security were discussed in a whole-of-nation approach. The AIES was represented by Michael Zinkanell who attended the conference.
On the 12th of January 2019, Ponto - the Grassroots Think Tank on European and Foreign Policy – organized a workshop entitled 'Reviving Europe - young perspectives on EU-Policies'. In the context of this event the following topics were analyzed and discussed: EU foreign policy, digitalization as well as environment and climate policy. The primary aim was to draw up a catalogue of demands for each of these topics in order to make the expectations of young people visible in the European political discourse. AIES research fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis, M.E.S. took part as an expert for EU Foreign Policy.
Europe and Georgia
On January 29, 2019, the AIES met with H.E. David Dondua, the Ambassador of Georgia. AIES President Werner Fasslabend, Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova and AIES Senior Advisor Nikolaus Scholik discussed a wide range of issues of mutual interest with the Georgian Ambassador, and agreed on future cooperation.
Raisina Dialogue 2019
For the fourth time, the Raisina Dialogue was organised in New Delhi by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation in January 2019. The multilateral conference is committed to addressing the challenges posed by current and emerging global geo-political trends.
The president of the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy, Dr. Werner Fasslabend, participated in the Raisina Dialogue that featured international representatives from politics, businesses, as well as the media and civil society. For more Information about the Dialogue please visit the following website, where videos of the discussions and presentations can also be found:
The Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation at the AIES
On the 15th of January 2019, a group of young scholarship holders from the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation visited the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy as part of a three-day educational trip. The president of the Institute, Mr. Werner Fasslabend and AIES Research Fellow Sofia Maria Satanakis, M.E.S. talked about 'Security Policy in Europe: Current questions on national, supranational and international level' as well as the Austrian EU-Presidency 2018.
Training Course in cooperation with the World Youth Academy
Four Cases of EU's policies towards Security and Defense, Migration, the Southern and Eastern European Neighborhood
With this course AIES offered an insight and delivers an overview over the current and forthcoming processes and structures regarding the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) and examines the EU's approach towards migration as well as towards its Southern (MENA Region) as well as Eastern Neighborhood (Eastern Europe).
At the end of the training course, participants will be able to identify the main features of the CSDP in the context of the recent developments in that field. Furthermore, they will be able to describe and demonstrate knowledge on the EU's approach towards migration. The participants will also be able to distinguish between and compare two different policy approaches of the EU in regional terms – in the Southern and Eastern European neighborhood. Finally, and most importantly, the participants will be able to evaluate critically the current trends and developments in the field of European foreign and security policy on the basis of the four blocs.
This seminar is suited for all those who are interested in entry-level basis of knowledge and expertise in the field of the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy, Common Security and Defence Policy, the EU's approach toward migration as well as the EU's policy towards the Southern and Eastern Neighborhood. Students of political science, international relations, European affairs, (military) history, (military) sociology, cultural- and social anthropology, and all others interested in the civil-military dimension of the topics. Neither technical knowledge, nor any other prior knowledge is necessary to participate in this training course.
Unity and disunity in wider Europe
On the initiative of the Austrian French Centre, several Austrian organizations, including the AIES, organized a public discussion (on October 29) and an expert workshop on the next day under the title: "Unity and disunity in wider Europe". In the public discussion with special attention to the EU policy in relation to the Western Balkans and the Eastern Partnership countries we tried to look at the disunity or rather disunities inside the EU and their effect on external policy. The focus was put on the importance of the countries of the Eastern Partnership (and the Western Balkans) for the EU.
The Neutrality of Austria and Switzerland
On 19 November 2018, the Embassy of Switzerland organized a panel discussion on 'The Neutrality of Austria and Switzerland' at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien. Among the invited speakers was also AIES Research Fellow Sofia M. Satanakis. The participants spoke about the relevance of neutrality in the age of globalization, the differences between Austria and Switzerland and a possible redefinition of the concept.
Understanding the Civil-Military Dimension of Cyberattacks
The "Understanding the Civil-Military Dimension of Cyberattacks" was hosted by the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES), as a part of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union program, and took place in Vienna on 17-18 November 2018. The training was a pilot activity under the European Security and Defense College's education, training, evaluation and exercise (ETEE) platform. As such, the activity was under the official patronage of Her Excellency HR Frederica Mogherini.
Prior to the training, the participants had to complete two online modules and then be evaluated on their understanding of the studied materials in order to receive a certificate by the ESDC.
This Cyber Security Training Course analysed current and forthcoming cyber challenges and examined the preventive and consequential management measures currently being taken by the international community to minimize the impact of cyber challenges. It specifically focused on the civil-military dimension of cyber warfare.
The course was led by Shaun Riordan and Dr. Joris Van Bladel who focused on the role of diplomacy, the weaponization of knowledge, and the different national and organizational approaches in cyber space. A lot of emphasis was put on the role of this 5th domain and how it affects war, conflict and security. The future implications of Big Data collection, Machine Learning and AI were also discussed.
The EU as a leading actor for security and defence
On the 9th of November the AIES organized the 22nd European Forum at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien, together with the Political Academy as well as the Wilfried Martens Centre. The topic of this year's event was "The EU as a leading actor for security and defence".
The AIES president Dr. Werner Fasslabend opened the conference together with Ambassador Emil Brix, the Director of the Vienna School of International Studies. Following these introductory speeches, the floor was given to the former Federal Chancellor of Austria: Dr. Wolfgang Schüssel.
Dr. Schüssel reflected on the words of President Macron and Chancellor Merkel, who pointed out that the EU is facing one challenge with three heads: the US, China and Russia. In his opinion the world will experience multiple centres of power in the upcoming years, creating the need for the EU to create a credible and effective strategy. This will be necessary to ensure the core values of Europe: welfare, the pursuit of happiness, freedom and peace and stability.
General Major Johann Frank of the Ministry of Defence pointed out the security and defence policy priorities of the Austrian presidency. The importance was put on keeping the momentum of previous presidencies and to focus on the security of the European borders but also the Western Balkans. Gen. Frank elaborated on the risk of a failed security strategy and a Europe that cannot act.
After these two keynote speeches the first panel of the day started. Titled "New Dynamics for the EU Common Security and Defence Policy" Jorge Domecq, Chief Executive of the European Defence Agency, General Lt. Esa Pulkkinen, Director General of the European Union Military Staff as well as Geoffrey Van Orden, the Vice-Chair of the European Parliament Special Committee on Terrorism gave their speeches and answered questions.
Jorge Domecq elaborated on the European issue of spending too much on personnel and not enough on innovation. As a consequence, the defence market in the EU is forced to turn to other markets. With the EU's Global Strategy steps were taken to enhance cooperation and create mechanism of funding.
GenLt Pulkkinen pointed out that the biggest concern of EU citizens is a perceived lack of security. As a result, the EU needs to strengthen its military capabilities as a whole, but it also needs to be understood that not all problems can be solved through military means. Regions like Africa will be of concern for the EU in the future and needs respective funding in order to be stabilized.
Geoffrey Van Orden made clear that BREXIT was a decision by the British people, which will be fulfilled by the UK government. Being critical of current developments in European Defence, he pointed out that Europe is already being defended successfully by NATO. Therefore, one must ask the question, why new instruments are needed. PESCO and similar initiatives will only create duplication and division.
The next keynote speech was held by H.E. Seyed Kamal Kharazi, the head of Iran's Strategic Council on Foreign Relations. Speaking about the EU, the US and the current sanctions of president Trump, he reflected on the changes in US policy, which sees globalization as a threat, the EU as a rival and targets the Iranian people with its new sanctions. H.E. Kharazi considers the Middle East as another challenge for the EU. When it comes to the US, he pointed out that formal meetings can only occur after the US administration has returned to the JCPOA.
The last panel discussion of the day was called "Southeastern Europe and its role for the EU stability". Radmila Shekerinska, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of the Republic of Macedonia, Igor Crnadak, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Jadranka Joksimovic, Minister of European Integration of the Republic of Serbia followed the invitation of the AIES to speak on the matter.
Deputy Prime Minister Radmila Shekerinska talked about the Balkans as a region of conflicts and as such it must not be underestimated, when it comes to crises there. Adding to this, progress is not a given. Since stability is the root of success, democracy and market economy should go hand in hand. The Republic of Macedonia was able to make progress in terms of media freedom and also with neighbouring countries. In international matters NATO delivered more than the EU.
The capacity of the Balkans to produce trouble was also the topic of Minister Igor Crnadak's speech. After talking about the political difficulties and divisions of Bosnia and Herzegovina, he pointed out that more sincerity and openness is needed, when it comes to regional cooperation, but also the EU. Clear criteria for the integration process are necessary and need to be applied accordingly. A uniting factor in BiH is becoming an EU member state.
Minister Jadranka Joksimovic made clear that the EU is quite capable of generating problems when it comes to the Balkans. A failure of the CSDP is the lacking enforcement of the agreements from the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue. Since peace is crucial for the region and also the way to prosperity, Serbia needs to know it has credible and reliable partners. Serbian citizens are in favour of joining the EU and the country itself is doing better financially than some EU member states.
This year's 22nd European Forum attracted close to 200 people, with even more following online. You can watch the recordings of the conference online.
The Future of Transatlantic Relations
On October 1, 2018, AIES organised a public talk with AIES Associate Fellow Stanley Sloan on „The Future of Transatlantic Relations under the Trump Administration Implications for the EU and NATO“ at the Diplomatische Akademie Wien. Stanley Sloan talked about the US relations with the EU after Trump came to power as well as the consequences for the transatlantic relations.
Austria and the CSDP – External Border and Crisis Management in Europe’s Vicinity
On 27 June 2018, the AIES together with the Federal Ministry of Defence organized the inaugural event for the Austrian EU-Presidency entitled 'Austria and the CSDP – External border and crisis management in Europe's vicinity' in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.
Wolfgang BAUMANN, Ivan KRASTEV, Markus TSCHANK, Sylvia HARTLEIF, Gertraud AUER BOREA D'OLMO, Caspar EINEM, Gudrun KRAMER, Wolfgang WOSOLSOBE and Werner FASSLABEND talked among others about the development and dynamic of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CSDP) and its added value for Austria, the political development within the EU and the priorities of the Austrian EU-Presidency 2018.
Talking Europe: Austria's Role in Europe
On June 18, 2018, the Shabka Think Tank, in cooperation with the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy organized a three-part panel discussion "Talking Europe: Konferenz & Diskussion zur regionalen Rolle Österreichs in Europa" which took place at the Bruno Kreisky Forum in Vienna. The participants discussed the future of Austria's foreign policy with regard to Austria's EU Council Presidency and it's regional role in Eastern and Southeastern Europe. Focus was laid on the topic of migration as well as the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The Conference has clearly shown that Austria will have to deal with various challenges during its Council Presidency.
Iran and the EU after the new US sanctions
On June 21, 2018, AIES organised a public talk with the Deputy Minister for Finance and Economy of Iran, H.E. Mohammad Khazaee, on „Iran and the EU after the new US sanctions - Consequences and Perspectives" at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna.
Mohammad Khazaee talked about the relations with the EU after the US withdrawal from the Iran Deal as well as the possible consequences. He urged the EU to be more proactive, take an independent look on Iran despite the US sanctions and help to re-establish the trust and credibility of the international community so that Iran can meet its commitments.
Pakistan's New Role Between China and Europe
From left to right: Oberstleutnant Rai Kashif Amin, military secretary to President Sardar Masood Khan, Dr. Werner Fasslabend, Former Minister of Defence, President of the AIES, S.E. Sardar Masood Khan, President of Azad Kashmir, Brigadier Dr. Walter Feichtinger, Ambassador Dr. Herbert Traxl.
On May 30, AIES organized a round table with H.E. Sardar Masood Khan, President of Azad Kashmir on "Pakistan's New Role Between China and Europe. Opportunities and Challenges of China's Silk Road Projects" at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna.
In combination with the public event Pakistan's New Role Between China and Europe the day before, a number of researchers and military officials were given the opportunity to discuss certain matters with his excellency Sardar Masood Khan. The topics ranged from Pakistan's neighbourhood in South Asia to the changing international Security Landscape. The guest speaker talked about the current developments and challenges regarding China's Belt and Road Initiative as well as the implications for Europe.
The Europe-China relationship
On May 28, AIES organized together with the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS) an international Expert-Workshop on "The new developments of the Europe-China relationship and tripartite cooperation in 16+1 Cooperation" in Vienna.
Dr. Werner FASSLABEND, Former Minister of Defence, President of the AIES, Dr. YANG Jian, Vice President, Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS) und Prof. XU Mingqi, President of Shanghai Institute of European Studies (SIES) talked about the recent developments in the bilateral relations between the EU and China as well as between China and the European countries that are part of the 16+1 Initiative. The participants also discussed the Austrian and the Western Balkans perspective, whereas experts from Austria and the region elaborated on the prospects and challenges in the bilateral relations.
Russia 'not trying to split EU', says Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin, speaking ahead of a visit to Austria, has said he does not want to divide the European Union. Statement by AIES Head of Institute Velina Tchakarova.
Watch the video here, statement starts at 1:00 min.
Prospects for European security autonomy
On 17 May 2018, the AIES together with the University Center for Peace Research organized an international symposium entitled 'Prospects for European security autonomy' in Vienna.
Prof. Gary Bittner, Bgdr Dr. Walter Feichtinger, Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy in Vienna, Nerys Jones and AIES president Dr. Werner Fasslabend talked about Donald Trump's relations with Europe and Russia, the development of European Defense Policy and the expectations from the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) as well as the implications from Brexit.
Towards A New EU Defense Identity
Yordan Bozhilov (Sofia Security Forum), Anu Anguelov (former Minister of Defense, Bulgaria), Werner Fasslabend (former Minister of Defense, Austria, AIES), Ursula Von der Leyen (Minister of Defense of Germany), Lt General Esa Pulkkinen (EUMS), Thorsten Geissler (KAS). Photos: Sofia Security Forum.
On 4 May 2018, the AIES in close cooperation with the Sofia Security Forum, the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung and the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies organized an international conference entitled 'Towards A New EU Defense Identity' in Sofia, Bulgaria.
The distinguished guests included the Minister of Defense of Germany, Ursula VON DER LEYEN, former Minister of Defense of Bulgaria, Anu ANGUELOV, the Director General of the EU Military Staff (EUMS), Lt. General Esa PULKKINEN, Ambassador Philip REEKER from the U.S. State Department, Deputy Chief of Defense in Bulgaria, Vice Admiral Emil EFTIMOV, the Minister of Defence of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Radmila SHEKERINSKA, Daniel FIOTT from the EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS), Sven BISCOP from the Egmont - Royal Institute for International Relations, Alessandro MARRONE from the Instituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), Dick ZANDEE from Clingendael – the Netherlands Institute of International Relations, Professor Jolyon HOWORTH and the Deputy Secretary General of NATO, H.E. Rose GOTTEMOELLER.
Alessandro Marrone (IAI), H.E. Atanas Zapryanov (deputy Minister of Defense, Bulgaria), Dick Zandee (Clingendael), Sven Biscop (Egmont), Joris Van Bladel (AIES)
Botschafter Philip Reeker (US State Department), Vizeadmiral Emil Eftomov (deputy Chief of Defense, Bulgaria), Radmila Shekerinska (Minister of Defense, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia), Prof. Jolyon Howorth, Daniel Fiott (EUISS), Sofia Maria Satanakis (AIES)
During the conference many topics and issues were discussed, including the current state of European Defense, the expectations from the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), the EU-NATO relationship and Europe's path towards 'strategic autonomy' as well as the future of the Western Balkan countries and their relationship with the European Union.
EU and Eastern Partnership
On 7 May 2018, the AIES hosted together with the Georgian Embassy and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, a round table with the Deputy Foreign Minister of Georgia Vakhtang Makharoblishvili on 'EU and Eastern Partnership: Going Beyond Association?'.
H.E. Vakhtang Makharoblishvili talked about the development of Georgia, the relations with the European Union regarding the Association Agreement and DCFTA as well as future expectations for the region.
ASEAN: The Strategic and Economic Importance of South East Asia
On 17 April 2018, the AIES hosted together with the Political Academy and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, a panel discussion on 'ASEAN: The Strategic and Economic Importance of South East Asia'.
H.E. Songsak Saicheua, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand and H.E. Ganeson Sivagurunathan, Ambassador of Malaysia, together with Professor Alfred Gerstl, Klaus Wölfer (Austrian Ambassador to Indonesia 2007-2011) and Gabriele Meon-Tschürtz (Austrian Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, Head of Asia and Pacific Division) talked about the development of ASEAN, the relations with China, the US and the European Union as well as future expectations for the region.
Bulgaria's priorities during the EU-Presidency 2018
On 16 March 2018, the AIES hosted together with the Sofia Security Forum and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, a talk with H.E. Lilyana Pavlova, minister of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU, on 'Bulgaria's priorities during the EU-Presidency 2018'.
Lilyana Pavlova talked among others about the need for more security and stability in a strong and united Europe as well as ensuring a better future for the European youth. She also identified the digital economy as a key priority for Bulgaria along with assuring a European perspective for the Western Balkan countries.
Donald Trump and the New Politics of Class
On 12 March 2018, the AIES together with the US Embassy in Vienna hosted a discussion with Michael Lind, Visiting Professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, on "Donald Trump and the New Politics of Class".
The election of Donald Trump is an illustration of a political realignment taking part in both the United States and Europe. The underlying causes are economic--the polarization of the post-industrial workforce--and demographic--the combination of low native fertility with high levels of immigration. The result is a new politics of class in which the traditional left-right divide has lost its meaning, replaced by new divisions: populism versus elitism and nationalism versus globalism.
Training in Brussels
Together with the European Security and Defene College (ESDC), the AIES conducted a pre-deployment training for future CSDP missions and operations personnel in Brussels.
Syria and the Middle East
Together with the Institute for Peace Support and Conflict Management (IFK) from the National Defence Academy Vienna, the Diplomatic Academy Vienna as well as the Political Academy, the AIES jointly organized an Expert Talk to Syria and the Middle East on the 1 March 2018.
Dr. Gudrun Harrer (derStandard), Dr. Arian Faal (Wiener Zeitung), Bgd Dr. Walter Feichtinger and Mag. Jasmina Rupp (both from the IFK) discussed the current situation in Syria on a joint panel under the moderation of Dr. Fasslabend (AIES). Whereas Ms Harrer and Mr. Faal focused on the political dimension of the conflict, Bgdr Feichtinger and Ms Rupp explained the military aspects.
After additional remarks of Dr. Fasslabend the audience had the opportunity to ask questions to the experts on the panel.
Interdisciplinary Technology Talks 2018
On the 22./23.02.2018 the AIES organized the Interdisciplinary Technology Talks, in close cooperation with the Amt für Rüstung und Wehrtechnik (ARWT). This was the third time the Institute was part of this setting.
During this informal talks European experts, researchers and representatives of the military could exchange their knowledge about current issues regarding global geopolitics and technology. The topics touched North Korea, the current US-Administration under Donald Trump as well as the MENA Region.
The European Union, the Eastern partner countries and Russia
On 7 February 2018, the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna – Vienna School of International Studies, the European Commission Representation in Austria as well as the AIES, hosted a panel discussion on "The European Union, the Eastern partner countries and Russia". Ambassador Markus Ederer, Head of the EU-Delegation in Russia, Ambassador Janos Herman, Head of the EU-Delegation in Georgia, and Ambassador Hugues Mingarelli, Head of the EU-Delegation in Ukraine, analysed the actual developments as well as challenges and perspectives for the relationship between the EU, the Eastern Partnership countries and Russia. The event was moderated by Ambassador Thomas Mayr-Harting, Managing Director for Europe and Central Asia at the European External Action Service in Brussels.
Afghanistan’s future and developments within the wider region
On 11 January 2018, the AIES hosted together with the Political Academy, the Wilfried Martens Centre and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna a talk with H.E. Hamid Karzai, former President of Afghanistan, on 'Afghanistan's future and developments within the wider region'.
Hamid Karzai talked about Afghanistan's geopolitical position, the relations with the United States, Russia and Pakistan, as well as migration and the threat of extremism. He urged Europe to be more proactive, take an independent look on Afghanistan and help to re-establish peace within the country.
Towards a European Security and Defence Union
On 10 November 2017 the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) hosted its 21st European Forum entitled "Towards a European Security and Defence Union" at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna which was chaired by AIES President and former Austrian Minister of Defence, Werner Fasslabend.
The Forum was opened by the Austrian Vice-Chancellor Wolfgang Brandstetter who stressed the need for common European solutions to the current set of challenges the EU and its member states are facing.
David McAllister, Chairman of AFET in the EP, underlined that the developments of CSDP during the last 13-14 months have been more significant than in all the years before. He welcomed the decision on the European Defence Fund which will help EU member states to cooperate within CSDP and on the signing of PESCO at the week to come.
Michèle Alliot-Marie, MEP and former French Foreign and Defence Minister, pointed out that the EU is at the beginning of a new stage in the field of security and defence, but stressed also the complementarity between EU and NATO.
The Slovak Secretary of State for Defence, Ròbert Ondrejcsak, stressed that the EU must become autonomous in the field of defence but should cooperate with NATO whenever possible. A strengthening of European defence is not only benefiting the members, but also Europe's partners.
The former Foreign Minister and now President of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations of Iran, Seyyed Kamal Kharrazi addressed in his remarks Iran's role in the Middle East and highlighted the need for close and good relations with the EU.
In the forefront of the EU-Africa Summit, the Representative of the AU to the EU, Ambassador Bramdeo stressed that security in Africa and Europe is interdependent, but the lenses that are used do differ. He pointed out that most threats in Africa arise from poverty, poor governance, climate change and violent conflicts, resulting in migration.
The Forum was attended by more than 180 participants.
The Situation in South Sudan
On 25 August 2017, Right Reverend Edward Hiiboro Kussala, Catholic bishop of Tombura-Yambio diocese in South Sudan and President of the Joint Sudan Catholic Bishops' Conference spoke about the actual situation and developments in South Sudan in general and the role of the catholic church in particular. He underlined the good relations with Austria and asked for continuing the Austrian efforts to help to overcome the difficult situation in his country.
A Visit from Shanghai
On 8 June, the AIES hosted a delegation of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS), led by President Dongxiao CHEN, to discuss current issues in Europe and China and to also identify possibilities of enhanced cooperation among the institutes.
The UN Collective Security System
On 1 June 2017, the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna hosted the Ernst Sucharipa Memorial Lecture. This time, Larry D. Johnson, Former Assistant Secretary-General for Legal Affairs in the United Nations held a speech regarding 'The UN Collective Security System: Wishful thinking?'.
India – the Future of a Giant
On 22 May 2017, the AIES hosted a talk with Samir Saran, Vice-President of the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) on the topic „India – the Future of a Giant" at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.
European Security Policy
On 5 May 2017, the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy hosted the traditional Europa Matinee. This year the focus was on "European Security Policy – Do we need an EU Army?" Representatives of all parties that are elected to the European Parliament debated on the future of CFSP and CSDP.
The future of the European Union
On 5 May 2017, the AIES together with the Embassy of the Republic of Croatia, the Austrian-Croatian Society and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna hosted a talk regarding 'The future of the European Union'.
The Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, Andrej Plenković, spoke about the current developments within his country as well as the political tendencies in the remaining EU27 and the future perspectives for the European Union.
The United States, Europe, and the Middle East in the new political era
On 24 April 2017, the AIES together with the American Jewish Committee, the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the ÖGAVN organized a talk regarding 'The United States, Europe, and the Middle East in the new political era' in the Diplomatic Academy.
David Harris, the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee talked among others, about the current political developments and trends in the United States and Europe as well as the situation in the Middle East and the relationships between those three.
Security in Europe
At the occasion of the President's Council of the EuroDefense Network, the AIES organised a public event on the topic of "Security in Europe" on 31 March 2017 at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. The event was opened by a key note of Hans-Peter Doskozil, Federal Minister of Defence and Sports. It was followed by a panel discussion on the future of the Common Security and Defence Policy. Panelists included the Secretary of State for European Affairs of Slovakia, Ivan Korcok, the former Polish Minister of Defence, Bogdan Klich, General Jean-Paul Perruche, former DGEUMS as well as Dr. Reinhard Meier-Walser from Hanns-Seidel-Stifung.
On 6 April 2017, the AIES together with the US Embassy in Vienna hosted an event on “The Outlook on Transatlantic Relations” at the America-House in Vienna. Panelists included Stanley R. Sloan, Non-Resident Senior Fellow of the Atlantic Council of the United States and Senior Fellow at the AIES, Jan Surotchak, Director of the Europe Programme of the International Republican Institute (IRI) and Elisabeth Christen of WIFO Wien.
IECEU: Improving the Effectiveness of EU Capabilities in Conflict Prevention
On 27 March 2017, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES), together with the European Security and Defence College, organised a policy dialogue within the Horizon 2020 project 'Improving the Effectiveness of EU Capabilities in Conflict Prevention' (IECEU) at the premises of the European Security and Defence College (ESDC) in Brussels.
The policy dialogue was held in order to test the results of the research conducted and to provide recommendations at the policy level. It focused mainly on the topics of interoperability and civil-military interface. Conclusions aiming at improving the effectiveness of CSDP missions and operations were drawn in those two fields. The stakeholders pointed out that military and civilian personnel involved in CSDP missions and operations do not share the same views on what interoperability should or should not be, and that the proliferation of actors, but especially of tasks expected of the EU, influences the need for interoperability in CSDP.
Potentials for improvement of the civil-military interface were presented on a scale from the most to the least politically feasible options. Stakeholders gave their feedback and opinions especially regarding the viability of potentials for improvement, focusing on the levels of ambition we want to have and the goals we wish to achieve when talking about civil-military interface. A further point of discussion was also pinpointed: do we need an integrated mission, or do we just need an excellent usage of the tools that are provided for the civil-military interface?
Georgia’s Peace Policy Vision: Reconciliation and Engagement
On 14 March 2017, the AIES together with the Embassy of Georgia, the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy of the ÖVP hosted a public event with the State Minister for Reconciliation and Civic Equality of Georgia, Mrs. Ketevan TSIKHELASHVILI regarding 'Georgia's Peace Policy Vision: Reconciliation and Engagement'.
Mrs. Tsikhelashvili addressed the current state of affairs in Georgia and talked about the political priorities of the Georgian government, the relations with the European Union as well as Russia and the frozen conflicts of Abkhazia and South-Ossetia.
Armenia’s Unique Path: Challenges And Opportunities
On 1 March 2017, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between Austria and Armenia, the AIES together with the Embassy of Armenia organized a talk in the Austrian Parliament regarding 'Armenia's unique path: Challenges and Opportunities'. Mr. Tevan E. POGHOSYAN, member of the National Assembly of Armenia, talked about Armenia's current political situation as well as the country's relations with the European Union, NATO and Russia.
Bosnia and Herzegovina on the European Path
On 25 January 2017, the AIES co-hosted together with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the IDM Vienna a talk with H.E. Igor Crnadak, Foreign Minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the topic “Bosnia and Herzegovina on the European Path - Expectations and Challenges” in which he addressed the current state of affairs in Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as the perspectives and challenges related to European integration.
Strategies and Balance of Power in the South China Sea
On 18 January 2017 the AIES organised in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy a panel discussion on the „Strategies and Balance of Power in the South China Sea “. AIES President Werner Fasslabend, Alfred Gerstl and Nikolaus Scholik talked about the global importance of the South China Sea, China’s New Silk Road and its economic and power-political orientation as well as the tensions with India and the China-US relations.
The future of US Foreign Policy under President Trump
On January 11, 2017 the AIES together with the Political Academy organized a public event regarding ‘The future of US Foreign Policy under President Trump’. The panelists Jan Techau (Direcor Richard Holbrooke-Forum, American Academy in Berlin), Jan Surotchak (International Republican Institute), Hans-Peter Manz (former Austrian Ambassador in Washington) und Helene von Damm (former US Ambassador in Austria) among others talked about the personality of Donald Trump and the possible course of action during his term of office. The focus laid particularly on the future relations of the United States with Russia, China and Iran and the possible security implications for Europe as well as the danger of a significant reduction of trust towards the US.
20. European Forum - Strategic Challenges for Europe
On 11 November 2016, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized together with the Political Academy and the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies, the traditional European Forum entitled ‘Strategic Challenges for Europe’ in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.
After a brief welcome address by AIES president Werner Fasslabend, the Forum was opened by H.E. Miroslav Lajčák, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Slovakia who talked about the current internal and external challenges for Europe. He was followed by former Polish Defense Minister Bogdan Klich, focusing on the development and problematics of the CSDP and Francois Heisbourg who laid emphasis on the new global strategy of the EU. The Austrian Minister of the Interior, Wolfgang Sobotka and President Heinz Fischer focused on migration as a security and political challenge for Europe and the views of Austria regarding European security policy respectively.
In the second part of the Forum Janis Karlsbergs talked about the CSDP future perspectives and Sven Biscop focused on the need for an EU Whitebook on defense. This year’s European Forum came to an end with the President of the Marmara Foundation, Akkan Suver and the former Secretary of Defense of Pakistan, General Yasin Malik Asif who spoke about the current strategic challenges in Europe’s neighborhood.
20 years after the Dayton Peace Agreements
On 27 October 2016, the Austrian Institute together with the Royal Higher Institute of Defense (RHID) of the Ministry of Defence of Belgium co-organised an event on the topic “More than 20 years after the Dayton Peace Agreements - The Political, Institutional, societal and security framework for Bosnia and Herzegovina” at the premises of the RHID in Brussels. The eminent speakers included the former Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Jansa, the former Minister of Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Selmo Cikotic as well as the Director General of the RHID, Colonel Guido Maene and the President of the AIES, Werner Fasslabend. At this occasion also a Cooperation Agreement between the RHID and the AIES was signed.
Iran after the Agreement: Hopes and Concerns
On 28. September 2016, the AIES together with the Political Academy of the ÖVP and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna were honoured to host H.E. Ali Akbar Salehi, Head of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran and former Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran, who spoke about “Iran after the Agreement; hopes and concerns”. Minister Salehi talked about the European perception of Iran, the need to rebuild trust, as well as the implementation of the Nuclear Deal and the relationship with the United States of America.
The European Union and its new strategy after the Brexit
On July 5, 2016 the AIES together with the Representation of the European Commission in Austria and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, organized a public discussion regarding 'The European Union and its new strategy after the Brexit'. Stefan LEHNE, Bernhard FELDERER, Michael DOCZY, Gerhard JANDL and Gustav GUSTENAU talked about the various challenges the EU is currently facing, the new EU Global Strategy and its impact on CSFP/CSDP as well as the future EU-exit of Great Britain and its implications.
The European aspirations of Georgia
On 1. June 2016, the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the AIES were honoured to host the Foreign Minister of Georgia, Mikheil Janelidze who spoke about the „European Integration of Georgia: Achievements and Challenges of the EU Associated Partner“.
The Foreign Minister talked about the European aspirations of Georgia, the frozen conflicts in the region as well as the country’s relations with Russia, the United States and NATO.
Slovakia’s first EU-Presidency
The Austrian- Slovak Society and the Embassy of the Slovak Republic in Vienna together with the AIES hosted a lecture of the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic Ivan Korčok on “Slovakia’s first EU – Presidency Challenges and Priorities” on the 17th of May 2016 at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Mr. Korčok spoke about the key points of Slovakia’s upcoming EU Presidency, focusing on the preparations of the Presidency, its main priorities as well as the state of the European Union in 2016.
Austria – 60 years of membership in the Council of Europe
On 23 May 2016, the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs hosted an event on „Austria – 60 years of membership in the Council of Europe“.
China‘s Belt and Road Initiative
On 18 May 2016 the AIES organised in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy a panel discussion on „China‘s Belt and Road Initiative“. AIES President Werner Fasslabend, Alfred Gerstl, Norbert Lacher and Nikolaus Scholik talked about China’s global ambitions, the geopolitical dimension of the New Silk Road and the ongoing territorial disputes in the South China Sea, as well as China’s close economic ties with the United States and the question of whether Europe can find its place in the new world order.
Return to Politics – Is Europe Prepared for it?
In the framework of the Conference on European Democracy (EuDEM) 2016, the AIES together with the Institute for State Organisation and Administrative Reform hosted on 25 April 2016 the panel discussion „Return to Politics – Is Europe prepared for it?“. The President of the AIES, Werner Fasslabend, Ambassador Volodymyr Ogrysko, Lieutenant Wolfgang Wosolsobe, Prof. Ian Harden, Eva Lichtenberger, Ambassador Claudia De Maesschalk, Natasa Pirc Musar and Ambassador Helmut Türk talked about the current security situation and the growing importance of having an effective CSDP, Russias foreign policy objectives, as well as Human Rights and Cyber Crime issues.
Europa – Matinee: How much EU does Europe need for a good future?
On 4 May 2016, the traditional Europa-Matinee organised by the AIES, the Political Academy, the Wilfried Martens Center for European Studies and the Diplomatic Academy took place. After a key note intoduction from Gerhard Pfister, member of the National Assembly of Switzerland, the Ambassadors of Hungary and Germany, Janos Perenyi and Johannes Konrad Haindl as well as the Ambassador of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Susan J. Le Jeune D’Allegeershecque and Mr Reinhold Lopatka debated about the main challenges currently faced by the EU and the rising need to redefine what the EU stands for.
Field trip to South Sudan and EU lessons learnt
In April 2016, a delegation of the AIES went for a fieldtrip to South Sudan in the context of the IECEU project. The aim was to analyze the latest developments in South Sudan and to especially assess the role of the European Union and in particular of its mission EUAVSEC South Sudan by interviewing representatives of the Government of South Sudan, from the EU Delegation in Juba, Representatives from UNMISS and NGOs.
EU and Turkey
On 13 April 2016, Volker Bozkir, Turkish Minister for European Union Affairs and Chief Negotiator gave a talk at the Diplomatic Academy on "Confronting Challenges: Turkey and the EU together".
India’s Challenges in the Contemporary Era
On April 14, 2016 Prof. Annpurna Nautiyal from the HNB Garhwal University of India, visited the AIES and gave a talk at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna about India’s external and domestic challenges in the present world. Professor Nautiyal spoke about Indias current foreign policy objectives, the relationship with China, Pakistan and the US as well as the importance of Europe for India and it’s place in the global arena.
On 3 March 2016, Gunther Krichbaum, Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee of the German Bundestag gave an insight into the current issues of migration flows, Ukraine and Russia as well as the upcoming referendum regarding the future of the United Kingdom in the European Union.
Conflicts in Eastern Europe
On 23 February 2016 the AIES, the Embassy of Georgia as well as the Diplomatic Academy hosted the Defense Minister of Georgia, Tinatin Khidasheli who spoke on the issue of „Conflicts in Eastern Europe: Challenges and Lessons for European Security“ and amongst others analysed Georgia‘s aspirations regarding EU and NATO as well as the country‘s relationship with Russia and the various frozen conflicts in the region.
Interdisciplinary Technology Talks 2016
In cooperation with the Amt für Rüstung und Wehrtechnik of the Federal Ministry of Defence and Sport, the AIES hosted the "Interdisciplinary Technology Talks 2016" providing a platform for analysis and debate on current challenges for European security policy from both, a geopolitical as well as a technical perspective.
European Security Policy
At the occasion of the visit of the Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan, Araz Azimov, the AIES together with the Embassy of the Republic of Aserbaidschan hosted an event on "European Security Policy: New Challenges and Opportunities for Neutral and Non-Aligned States" on 12 February 2016 at the Austrian Parliament. Besides Deputy Minister Azimov, also the Security Policy Director of the Austrian Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, Gerhard Jandl, gave an introductory speech.
Naval Power in the 21st Century - USA, China and the EU?
The AIES hosted a book presentation followed by a discussion on „Naval Power in the 21st Century“ on the 10th of February 2016 at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Nikolaus Scholik, book author and Senior Advisor at the AIES and Sebastian Bruns, from the Institute for Security Policy at Kiel University, analysed the maritime capabilities of the US and China as well as the latest developments and the EU’s position in maritime affairs.
Iran and the West
At the occasion of the Iran Talks in Vienna, the AIES hosted a roundtable on "Iran and the West" on 10 July 2015 at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Christian Prosl, former Austrian Ambassador to the United States, Walter Posch from the National Defence Academy, Arian Faal, APA and Wiener Zeitung as well as Massud Mossaheb from the Austrian-Iranian Society analysed the talk and the implications of the possible outcomes.
EU Project "Improving the Effectiveness of Capabilities in EU Conflict Prevention"
The AIES is part of the consortium IECEU "Improving the Effectiveness of Capabilities in EU Conflict Prevention" consisting of a multinational team of 11 partners from 7 different countries. IECEU is funded by the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 and it studies the conflict prevention, crisis management and peacebuilding capabilities of EU. Please find the Press Release here. Additional information can be found via facebook.
European Neighbourhood Policy – a View from Portugal
On 29 June, the AIES and the Embassy of Portugal in Vienna hosted a lecture on "Challenges and Perspectives for the European Neighbourhood Policy – a View from Portugal" with Dr. Bruno Maçães, Portuguese Secretary of State for European Affairs.
On 18 June 2015, the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the AIES were honoured to host the President of the Republic of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic who spoke on the issue of "Croatia – Advocating Responsibility to Consolidate South East Europe within EU and NATO".
At the occasion of the EU Presidency of Lativa, the Embassy of Latvia in Vienna together with the Verband Österreich-Nordische Länder and the AIES hosted a Latvian-Austrian debate on 22 May 2015 at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Speakers included Dr. Andris Levans from Latvia and Dr. Gunther Hauser from the National Defence Academy Vienna.
Austrian Foreign Policy
On 21 May 2015 AIES Senior Advisor Ambassador Franz Cede together with Ambassador Christian Prosl launched their book on Austrian Foreign Policy entitled "Anspruch und Wirklichkeit - Österreichs Außenpolitik seit 1945".
EU's Eastern Partnership
In the forefront of the Riga Summit, the AIES together with the Embassy of Latvia organised on 27 April 2015 a seminar on "Eastern Partnership policy - the way forward to a secure and prosperous Europe". Speakers included Ambassador Edgars Skuja, Ambassador of Latvia in Austria, the Deputy Political Director of the Polish MFA,Bogumila Ordyk, Ambassador Werner Almhofer, Austrian MFA, Lasha Tugushi, Chairman of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, Col Josef Hölzl from the National Defence Academy and AIES Senior Fellow Velina Tchakarova.
20 years of Austrian Membership in the EU
On 7 May 2015, the traditional Europa-Matinee organised by the AIES, the Wilfried Martens Center for European Studies, the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy took place. MEP Elisabeth Köstinger, Ambassador Gregor Woschnagg, AIES-President Werner Fasslabend and the Director of the Diplomatic Academy, Hans Winkler, analysed in-depth 20 years of Austrian Membership in the EU.
On 29 April 2015, Gunther Krichbaum, Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee of the German Bundestag gave an insight into current issues of European integration and the role of the EU as a global actor.
Values – Providing Stability in Times of Crisis?
In the framework of the Conference on European Democracy (EuDEM) 2015 the AIES together with the Institute for State Organisation and Administrative Reform hosted a panel discussion on "Values - Providing Stability in Times of Crisis?" Speakers included Werner Fasslabend, President of the AIES, Eva Lichtenberger, former Member of the European Parliament, Alfonso Zardi, Head of Democratic Institutions and Governance Department, Council of Europe and Brigade General Walter Feichtinger from the National Defence Academy.
On 19 March 2015 the AIES and the US Mission to the OSCE hosted a talk by H.E. Daniel Baer, US Permanent Representative to the OSCE on "European Security - the Transatlantic Perspective" in the Austrian Parliament. The discussion centered around the developments in Ukraine and the relationship with Russia as well as other current security political developments and the transatlantic partnership.
Japan's Security Policy
On 17 March 2015, the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy and the Embassy of Japan hosted a talk on "Japan's Security Policy" with Prof. Kazuya Sakamoto, Professor of the Graduate School of Law and Politics.
The End of the European Dream
In cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy and the Embassy of the Republic of Poland, the AIES hosted an event on "The End of the European Dream: From Rome to Kiev" with Jan Zielonka, Professor of European Politics at the University of Oxford. Prof. Zielonka analysed the current state of affairs of the European project and the necessity for reform due to the actual challenges Europe is facing.
Expert roundtable on South Sudan
On 10 February 2015, the AIES hosted an expert roundtable on South Sudan. Ambassador Sitona Abdalla Osman, the South Sudanese Ambassador to Berlin, gave an insight into the current situation as well as the challenges and perspectives ahead of the youngest country in the world.
Chemical Weapons in Syria
On 2 Februar 2015, Angela Kane, UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, gave a talk on „Chemical Weapons in Syria – Developments 2013-2014: Remaining Challenges“ in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. The event was organized by the International Institute for Peace together with the AIES and the Diplomatic Academy.
On 14 November 2014, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized its European Forum entitled “Strategic Perspectives for CFSP and CSDP” in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. The Forum was opened by the Austrian Minister of Justice, Wolfgang Brandstetter who underlined the importance of stronger European cooperation in the fields of security. The first panel stressed the issue of coherence and speaking with one voice when it comes to the role of the EU as an international actor. Both speakers stressed the need for the EU to formulate what the EU is demanding. A specific panel was dedicated to the developments within CSDP. There was agreement that the EU needs to tackle its defence issues more seriously, but it also has to declare its level of ambition. Regarding the security implications of the situations in Ukraine and in the MENA region, there was consensus that regional cooperation is necessary to effectively deal with the situation on the ground. In order to combat terrorist actions, a more comprehensive approach is needed.
Among the distinguished speakers were Ambassador Kickert, Political Director at the Austrian MFA, Sir Robert Cooper, former Director General for Politico-Military Affairs at the Council Secretariat, LtGen Wolfgang Wosolsobe, Director General of the EU Military Staff, former Ukrainian Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk, Prof. Sven Biscop (Egmont Institute), Nicolai von Ondarza (SWP Berlin) as well as various Ambassadors of the MENA region to Austria.
More than 130 people coming from Austria and EU countries attended the Forum.
Presentation of the Yearbook 2014 of the EU Institute for Security Studies
On 6 November 2014 the AIES hosted the presentation of the Yearbook 2014 of the EU Institute for Security Studies which was followed by a panel discussion on recent security political developments.
The future role of the United Kingdom in the EU
The AIES and the Political Academy hosted an expert roundtable on the topic of "The future role of the United Kingdom in the EU - is a Brexit inevitable?" on 10 October 2014. Dr. Tim Oliver, Senior Lecturer at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst analysed the possibility of a Brexit and its possible consequences on Great Britain and the EU. Some of his argumentation can be found in the joint publication downloadable here.
Security Jam 2014
Let's Jam. The Security Jam focuses the brain power of thousands of experts around the world on key security issues. Over 54 hours and across 6 discussions forums, participants will login to a state-of-the-art online collaboration platform to discuss topics as diverse as strategic partnerships, crisis management, future capabilities and cyber-security. Experts from leading think-tanks around the world will moderate the discussions to produce top recommendations.
Now it’s your turn. Seize this opportunity to share your ideas with world leaders! Whether you are a soldier in Afghanistan, a researcher in Stockholm or a diplomat in Kenya, the quality of your ideas is all that matters. The Security Jam lets you take part in frank discussions and the free exchange of ideas with colleagues worldwide, and you select the most innovative ideas.
Make a real impact. The Jam’s top 10 recommendations will provide a roadmap for the new EU and NATO leaderships and will be presented to them at a high-level event in Brussels. The report will also be distributed to thousands of policymakers and decision-makers across the public-private divide globally. Take advantage of this unique opportunity, join us October 14-16, 2014.
Russia and the West
On 24 June 2014 a panel discussion on "Russia and the West" was organised by the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy and the Martens Centre for European Studies. Key note speeches were provided by Prof. Aurel Braun, University of Toronto and Harvard University and the long-term Austrian Ambassador in Moscow, Dr. Martin Vukovich.
Jointly with the Embassy of the Republic of Poland, the AIES organised a discussion on the topic of "25 years of freedom: does history repeat in Ukraine?". The key note speech was held by the former Foreign Minister of Ukraine, Boris Tarasiuk who was joint by Prof. Marci Shore from the Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen and the Director of the Centre For Eastern European Studies OSW Warsaw, Dr. Olaf Osica.
Ukraine and Europe
On 27 May 2014, the AIES jointly with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna
hosted a lecture with H.E. Erkki Tuomioja, Minister of Foreign Affairs of
Finnland on the issue of "Ukraine - Europe at crossroads".
Challenges for the economy and security in Europe
On 8 May 2014 the traditional Europa-Matinee was hosted by the AIES in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy. This year, the event was entitled "Challenges for the economy and security in Europe". After the key note speech by Reinhold Lopatka, Margit Schratzenstaller and Walter Feichtinger identified and analyzed current issues related to economy and security in Europe.
Security in the Mediterranean
Together with the Institute of International Economic Relations (IIER), the AIES organised an expert rountable in Athens on the topic of "Security in the Mediterranean" on 9 April 2014. Topics included the recent developments in Syria and the MENA region, the relations between Greece and Turkey as well as the future of the CFSP and CSDP.
Security in Sudan and South Sudan
On 17 March 2014, the AIES together with the Political Academy hosted an expert meeting with Abdelwahid Yousif Ibrahim Mokhtar, Minister of the Interior of Sudan. Topics included security issues in Sudan, the situation in Darfur as well as recent developments in South Sudan.
On 19 February the AIES hosted an expert roundtable with the Foreign Minister of Iran Mohammad Javad Zarif on recent issues.
NATO in 2014 and beyond
In cooperation with the Ministry for European and International Affairs, the National Defence Academy and the Embassy of Croatia in Vienna, the AIES organised a key note address by NATO Assistant Secretary General Ambassador Sorin Ducaru on the topic "NATO in 2014 and beyond: Meeting New Challenges to Global Security".
The Crisis in South Sudan
In cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy, the AIES hosted an expert roundtable on "The Crisis in South Sudan: Causes and Possible Solutions." Kakoma Itonde, Assistant Director of the Conflict Resolution Program of the Carter Center/Atlanta, Annette Weber, Head of the Near Middle East and Africa Research Group at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs SWP/Berlin as well as the former Austrian Ambassador to the African Union and South Sudan, Gudrun Graf analyzed the causes of the current crisis in South Sudan as well as potential ways to overcome the current deadlock.
Georgia in 2014 at Crossroads Again
On 24 January 2014, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized a talk on the issue "Georgia in 2014 at Crossroads Again" with the State Minister of Georgia on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, H.E. Alex Petriashvili, in cooperation with the Embassy of Georgia and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. Mr. Petriashvili discussed, analysed and debated the current social, economic and security political trends in Georgia and in the South Caucasus regarding the advancing Euro-Atlantic integration in the region.
On 8 November 2013, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized its traditional 17th European Forum in the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna.
This year’s European Forum focused on the European Council on Defense and new impulses for CSDP. Furthermore the developments of CFSP and CSDP as well as the role of the EU as an international actor were analyzed and debated.
Among the speakers were, besides Gerald Klug, Minister of Defence and Sports, Univ. Prof. Dr. Beatrix Karl, Minister of Justice, the former Vice-President of the European Commission and former Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, the EPP Group Coordinator Security and Defence, MEP Michael Gahler, General Wolfgang Wosolsobe, Director General of the EU Military Staff, Karsten D. Voigt, former President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and Admiral Willy Herteleer, President of Eurodefense Belgium.
Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico in Vienna
On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the independence of the Slovak Republic, the Austrian-Slovak Society and the AIES organised a public lecture by the Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico on the topic of "20 years of the independent Slovak Republic and 20 years of Slovak-Austrian diplomatic relations" on 18 November 2013 in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.
Climate Change and Migration
The Institute for Environment, Peace and Development (IUFE) and the AIES organised an expert seminar "Climate Change and Migration - Challenges for Realpolitik" on 22 October 2013 in the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. A distinguished panel consisting of Univ. Prof. Dr. Helga Kromp-Kolb (BOKU Vienna), Univ. Prof. Dr. Manfred Nowak (Ludwig-Boltzmann Institute for Human Rights) and the Head of the IFK at the National Defense Academy, BG Dr. Walter Feichtinger analysed the root causes and challenges of climate change and migration and the consequences for Realpolitik.
On 24 September 2013 the fraction leader of the Ukrainian UDAR Party, Vitali Klitschko, visited Vienna and spoke with AIES-President Dr. Fasslabend about the EU-Ukraine relationship as well as the forthcoming Summit on the Eastern Partnership.
Options for the Future of the CSDP
The Belgian Egmont Royal Institute for International Relations and the AIES organised the expert seminar "Europe as a Security Provider: Options for the Future of the CSDP" on May 3 in Vienna. Apart form evaluating the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU, options for the December European Council, which will focus on this policy, were discussed. Further cooperation partners of this event were the Büro für Sicherheitspolitik of the Austrian Ministry of Defence, the Embassy of Belgium in Vienna and the European Security and Defence College.
On 4 December 2012, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized its traditional 16th European Forum in the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna.
Among the speakers were, besides Dr. Michael Spindelegger, Vice-Chancellor and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Karlheinz Töchterle, Minister of Science and Research, the former President of the European Parliament and former Polish Prime Minister Jerzy Buzek, the governor of the Austrian National Bank, Prof. Dr. Ewald Nowotny, Prof. Dr. Hans-Peter Burghof from the University of Hohenheim and Stefaan de Corte, Deputy Director of Research of the CES, the director of the EU-ISS, Dr. Antonio Missiroli, Jean-Paul Perruche, former Director General of the EU Military Staff, Jo Coelmont, Senior Associate Fellow at the Egmont Institute and Col Dr. Johann Frank, Head of the Bureau for Security Policy.
This year’s European Forum focused on the future of the EU in general and how the European Union had responded to the financial and economic implications of the crisis. Furthermore, the future development for CFSP and CSDP were analyzed and debated.
On 31 October 2012, the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organized an expert conference on the issue "Arctic Security: Challenges in a sensitive environment" in cooperation with the Embassy of Canada and the Diplomatic Academy. Experts from Canada, Norway and Russia analyzed and debated current economic and security political trends in the region especially affected by climate change.
EU and China
In the framework of the AIES project on EU-China, Franco Algieri and Arnold Kammel visited China from 21 to 26 October 2012. Lectures and talks with the AIES experts were held in Beijing at the Institute of World Development and the Centre for European Studies, Renmin University as well as in Shanghai at the Institute for German and EU studies, Tongji University and at the Shanghai Institute for European Studies.
Sudan, South Sudan & Europe
On October 19, 2012, the AIES held a conference on the topic of “Sudan, South Sudan & Europe: Prospects of Cooperation for Regional Peace and Development” in cooperation with the Austro-Arab Chamber of Commerce, the Political Academy and the WKO. Amongst the participants of this high level conference were the Sudanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, H.E. Mr. Ali Ahmed Karti, South Sudan’s Deputy Foreign Minister, H.E. Elias Nyamlell Wakoson, and the Austrian Vice-Chancellor and Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Dr. Michael Spindelegger.
Munich International Summer University in Vienna
18 students from 11 different nations participated at the Vienna part of Munich International Summer University (MISU) from July 16 to 27, 2012. The AIES is a project partner of the MISU and offers an introduction to the system and policies of the European Union. Additional visits to international organisations in Vienna are offered.
The NATO after the Chicago Summit
On 3 July 2012 the AIES organised a panel discussion on the role of NATO partners after the Chicago Summit at the Austrian Parliament. The Austrian Ambassador to NATO, Ambassador Schramek and the former Chief of Staff of the European NATO-Headquarter SHAPE, General Lather analyzed the recent developments after the Chicago Summit and debated the future role of the Alliance focusing on the concept of cooperative security.
The Development in Sudan
Upon invitation by the AIES, the Political Academy and the Diplomatic Academy, H.E. Ali Ahmed Karti, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Sudan and H.E. Yahia Hussein, State Minister for International Cooperation, discussed on 21 June 2012 recent developments in the relationship between Sudan and South Sudan. Emphasis was put on Europe's role seen from an African perspective.
Students from Singapore in Vienna
From 13-22 June 2012 students of the National University of Singapore participated in the European Studies Programme of the AIES. Like last year this program was entitled "Approaching the European Union" and is part of a cooperation of the AIES with the Munich International Summer University (MISU).
On 9 May 2012 the AIES organized together with the Political Academy and the Diplomatic Academy the traditional Europamatinée. This year's topic dealt with the question: Europe's economy after the crisis: which policies for an economic boom? Minister Mitterlehner, Otmar Karas, Vicepresident of the European Parliament and the head of the Austrian Institute of Economic Research debated new ways for providing incentives for a prospering economy.
Security Jam - an online and worldwide discussion on security topics
The Security Jam is an online and worldwide discussion on security topics. AIES and other Think-tanks partner this online discussion. Topics of the jam include: Future Capabilities, International Cooperation, Forging Strategic Partnerships, Crisis Management, Facing The Cyber-Challenge, Transnational & Hybrid Threats, Object-Lessons: Libya & Afghanistan.Let's Jam. The Security Jam focuses the brain power of thousands of experts around the world on key security issues. Over four days participants will login to a state-of-the-art online collaboration platform to discuss topics as diverse as strategic partnerships, crisis management, cyber-security and future capabilities. Leading subject-matter experts will focus discussions on producing concrete solutions.
Now it's your turn. Take this opportunity to influence leaders with your ideas. Whether you are a soldier in Afghanistan, a researcher in London or a diplomat in Sierra Leone, the quality of your ideas is all that matters. Security Jam 2012 lets you take part in frank discussions and the free exchange of ideas with colleagues worldwide, and then you can select the most innovative ideas.
Make a real impact. Global leaders will receive the Jam's initial results ahead of the NATO and G8 summits in Chicago in May 2012. EU and NATO leadership will receive the full report, including the ten most acclaimed recommendations, in Brussels later that month. The report will also be sent to thousands of high-level policymakers around the world. Take advantage of this unique opportunity; join us March 19th - 23rd 2012.
Register at www.securityjam.org
Austrian security policy
In cooperation with the Renner-Institut the AIES organised on 2 December 2011 in Vienna a public discussion, analysing Austrian security policy in context of a European security policy.
AIES European Forum: Which financial and economic policies does the EU need?
On November 4, 2011 the Austria Institute for European and Security Studies (AIES) organized its 15th European Forum in the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna. Among the speakers were, besides Dr. Maria Fekter, Minister of Finance, the former Foreign Minister of Greece and Member of the European Parliament, Dimitrios Droutsas, Prof. Dr. Christian Keuschnigg from the University St. Gallen, Dr. Claus Raidl, President of the Austrian National Bank, Dr. Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell, former member of the board of the European Central Bank, Prof. Hans Geeroms, economic advisor to the Belgian Prime Minister, and last but not least Dr. Christian Mölling from the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP).
The international conference took place in cooperation with the Political Academy, the Centre for European Studies and the European Security and Defence College (ESDC).
This years European Forum focused on the financial crisis and how the European Union had responded to this challenge. Minister of Finance, Maria Fekter, presented in her opening speech the six point programme which had been decided on by the European leaders on October 26. The programme includes the stabilization of Greece, that is to say a debt relief for Greece, a stabilization package for banks, a more flexible framework for the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and details about national budget discipline. Furthermore, the programme contains propositions for reducing macro-economic imbalances, actions to ensure fiscal sustainability in all EURO states, and strategic considerations on new improved management of the EURO-group. In principle Fekter regards the Euro as stable currency. The current crisis, she pointed out, is rather a sovereign debt crisis than a Euro crisis.
The former Greek Foreign Minister Droutsas shed light on the domestic situation in Greece and thanked Austria for the solidarity the country had shown to Greece which had always been an important member of the European Union; this is the reason why it is crucial to make sure Greece remains an EU member state. Prof. Keuschnigg and Prof. Geeroms provided an economic analysis whether already taken measures were sufficient to stabilize the European financial system, while Dr. Tumpel-Gugerell focused on the role the ECB could or should take in European financial and economic policy. Dr. Raidl underlined the success story of the Euro and called for more Europe.
In his closing remarks Dr. Mölling presented possible repercussions of the financial and economic crisis for the further development of the EU's Common Security and Defense Policy.
China-EU relations in the 21st century
The perspectives for political and economic co-operation between China and the EU were the topic of a joint conference of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS) and the AIES on 12 September 2011 in Vienna. The Chinese and European experts concluded that the euphoria concerning the China-Europe partnership has disappeared and instead relations are kept sober and pragmatic. This event of both institutes was organized in co-operation with the Chinese Embassy in Vienna and the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (WKO).
Alumnis of the programme on the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU met in September in Ohrid (FYROM) at the "High Level Conference: Europe's Security Policy". The key note speech was given by the President of the AIES, Dr. Werner Fasslabend (Link to report in German).
Sudan after Secession
Ten days after the independence of South Sudan, the AIES together with the Diplomatic Academy and the Political Academy organized on 19 July 2011 a lecture by H.E. Ali Ahmed Karti, the Foreign Minister of Sudan, and H.E. Yahia Hussein, State Minister for International Cooperation on the topic "Sudan after Secession: Prospects of European and African Cooperation".
Munich International Summer School in Vienna
16 students from 14 different nations participated at the Vienna part of Munich International Summer University (MISU) from July 18 to 29, 2011. The AIES is a project partner of the MISU and offers an introduction to the system and policies of the European Union. Additional visits to international organisations in Vienna are offered.
Expert discussion with Prof. Julian Lindley-French
In the framework of the co-operation with the Austrian Ministry of Defence, the AIES organized an expert discussion with AIES Associate Fellow Prof. Julian Lindley-French on June 27, 2011. The main topic was the future of European security and defence and the role of smaller EU member states.
European Studies Program for students from Singapore
From June 13-17 students of the National University of Singapore took part in the European Studies Programme of the AIES. This program is part of a cooperation of the AIES with the Munich International Summer University (MISU). More courses with students from different parts of the world are planned for this year.
Regional Cooperation in Southeast Asia and Europe
In cooperation with the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia and the Diplomatic Academy Vienna the AIES organized a seminar on 9 June 2011 with the title "Regionalism: The future of ASEAN and lessons learned from the European Union experiences". The Indonesian Ambassador H.E. I Gusti Agung Wesaka Puja, Ambassador Dr. Bernhard Zimburg (Head of the Asia Department of the Austrian Foreign Ministry), Dr. Hariyadi Wirawan (Head of Department of International Relations, University Indonesia, Jakarta) and Dr. Franco Algieri (AIES Director of Research) discussed the development of ASEAN and the EU.
Europe Day 2011
On the occasion of Europe Day, 9 may 2011, the AIES in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy Vienna invited Michael Spindelegger, Vice Chancellor and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Elisabeth Köstinger, Member of European Parliament and Wolfgang Waldner, Secretary of State to dicuss the current development of the European Union.
Chinese Ambassador visited the AIES
A delegation of the Chinese embassy in Austria, headed by Ambassador Shi Mingde, visited the AIES on 24 March 2011. In the framework of the visit common projects on Chinese-European relations were discussed.
Counter Terrorism The Indonesian and Austrian Experience
The AIES organized in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia a seminar on "Counter Terrorism - The Indonesian and Austrian Experience". Speakers included Petrus Golose (Director for Enforcement, Indonensian National Counter Terrorism Agency) as well as Peter Gridling (Director, Federal Agency for State Protection and Counter Terrorism).
European Studies Program for students from Thailand
For the first time students from Chulalongkorn University Bangkok took part in the European Studies Program of the AIES. This program is part of a cooperation of the AIES with the Munich International Summer University (MISU). More courses with students from different parts of the world are planned for this year.
14th Europen Forum 2010 The Lisbon Treaty and the future of CSDP
Within the framwork of the 16th International EuroDefense Conference, 4-6 November 2010, the AIES organized in cooperation with the Bureau of Security Policy Center of the Federal Ministry of Defence and Sports the 14th European Forum. The international Conference with the title "The Lisbon Treaty and the future of CSDP" took place in the National Academy of Defence in Vienna, November 5th 2010.
In his opening address the Federal Minister of Defence, Norbert Darabos, highlighted the successful external missions of the Austrian Armed Forces and their high appreciation by the international community. Werner Fasslabend, president of the AIES, emphasized a more strategic European Union. Crucial current issues were discussed by General Edmund Entacher, Austrian Chief of Defence Staff, General Raimund Schittenhelm, Commander of the National Defense Academy, representatives of EU institutions and European think tanks.
AIES becomes part of the ESDC network
The European Security and Defence College (ESDC) was established in 2005 with the aim of providing strategic-level education in European Security and Defence Policy, now Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). It followed thorough need analysis and experimentation phases. The creation of the ESDC was to give the Common Security and Defence Policy a training and education instrument which actively promotes a European security culture.
Expert Conference: European Security Policy with the Lisbon Treaty
On Sep 13, 2010 the final conference in a series of workshops, dealing with European security in light of the Lisbon Treaty, took place in the Austrian National Defence Academy in Vienna. Organized by the AIES and under the auspices of the European Security and Defence College experts from research institutes as well as national and European institutions discussed the effects of the Lisbon Treaty on the development of European security policy.
This AIES project is part of a cooperation with the Bureau for Security Policy of the Austrian Ministry of Defence and Sports. Other partners are the Belgian Egmont Royal Institute for International Relations and the German Council on Foreign Affairs. The results of this project will be published by the end of 2010 in an AIES policy paper and further on in an edited volume within the book series AIES Beiträge zur Europa- und Sicherheitspolitik.
Young Europeans EURODEFENSE Conference
From July 11-17, 2010 EURODEFENSE France organized the Young European EURODEFENSE Conference at the military school of Saint-Cyr. This conference was focusing on the topic "Ahead with Lisbon Treaty, New Stakes and New Choices for Europe in Defence area". During the conference week international experts from the political and military area discussed their vision of the Common Security and Defense policy in light of the Lisbon treaty. The young delegates drafted a letter to the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy in which they explained their thoughts concerning the topic. Research fellow Michael Fuker represented the AIES.
Europa-Forum Wachau - Cooperation with AIES
The 15th European Forum Wachau took place from 26 to 27 June 2010 at Göttweig Abbey in Lower Austria. This year's meeting was focussing on the topic "The Danube region within a new Europe". For the first time, the AIES acted as scientific advisor for the European Forum.
A Grand Strategy for the EU
Professor Jolyon Howorth, Yale University, was guest speaker in an expert roundtable dealing with the topic of an EU grand strategy and its consequences for the member states, organised by the AIES on June 8, 2010 in Vienna. The next day he spoke at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna about relations between European Security and Defence Policy and NATO. This event was organised by the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and the Institute for European Integration Research in cooperation with the AIES.
Goals and Priorities of the Spanish EU Presidency
On 20 January 2010, the AIES together with the Political Academy hosted a talk with the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Spain to Austria, H.E. José María Pons Irazazábal, about the priorities of the Spanish EU Presidency.
13th European Forum of the AIES
On December 4, 2009 the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) hosted the 13th European Forum in the festivity hall of the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna. The title of this major annual conference of the AIES was "Europe's role and security with the Lisbon Treaty". Three days after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty the forum offered a comprehensive approach to discuss the impact of the Treaty on the future integration process with high-ranking experts and diplomats from the national and European level. There was a broad agreement amongst the participants that this new phase of the EU's development will bring improvements as concerns efficiency, the capability to act and the decision-making process. Nevertheless, a range of EU internal and external challenges was identified, which demand more reform steps. Amongst others, the EU will be asked to further develop existing and new strategic partnerships, especially with the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India and China). Equally important will be the strengthening of crisis management capabilities, in particular civil-military ones. In sum, the EU needs to debate a Grand Strategy.
Space and Maritime Security - Strategies and Capabilities to counter piracy
On 30 November 2009 the AIES has held together with the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) a workshop on the topi "Space and Maritime Security - Strategies and Capabilities to counter piracy" in Vienna.
International experts from research institutions, EU institutions, international organizations and the industry discussed security political options and the use of space applications to counter piracy including the respective implications for maritime security. The use of space applications and their importance for maritime security was demonstrated using the example of the EU operation NAVFORAtalanta.
The results of the workshop will be published in a workshop report.
Building a New World Order: The EU and the Emerging Powers, the BRICs
Together with the Egmont - Royal Institute for International Relation the AIES had held an expert seminar on the topic "Building a New World Order: The EU and the Emerging Powers, the BRICs" in Brussels. International experts discussed the role of Brazil, Russia, India & China and the implications for the EU. The AIES was represented by its president Werner Fasslabend, its Director of Research Franco Algieri and Research Fellow Michael Fuker.
Last Workshop in the series "Rediscovering Multilateralism: Toward a Cooperative Approach to Middle East Reform" in Washington D.C.
Is the support of political reform processes in the Middle East a shared objective of the new U.S. administration, the European Union, and reformists in the Middle East? What are perspectives of future co-operation? The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) together with the American think tank "Project on Middle East Democracy" (POMED) hosted a series of workshops in 2009 to tackle this question. The workshops aimed at identifying converging interests in Europe, the United States and the Middle East with regard to political reform in the Middle East. The first workshop took place in Washington D.C. end of May 2009, involving 15 participants from Europe, the U.S. and the Middle East. The findings of the first workshop were then discussed in an event at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Auswärtige Politik (DGAP) in Berlin in the beginning of June 2009. The final workshop in the series was held in Washington again beginning of October 2009. During a public event at Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, AIES Associate Fellow Almut Möller together with participants of the workshop reported about the workshop's discussions and findings. The results as well as policy recommendations will be published in a policy paper by the end of 2009.
New Missions - New Challenges
On 22 June 2009 the Department of Leadership and Management of the Swedish National Defence College organized in cooperation with the AIES in Stockholm a research workshop on the topic "New missions - new challenges. Peacekeeping and Crisis Management: The EU and Canada's New Operations". The AIES was represented by its associate fellow Franz Kernic and its Director of Research, Franco Algieri, as well as its Secretary General, Arnold Kammel. The research workshop report is now available as a pdf download.
The European Union as a global player: a view from the Council
"The European Union as a global player: a view from the Council" was the topic of an expert roundtable organised by the AIES on September 3, 2009. Dr. Karl Buck, who has been for a long time the director of the Latin America department at the Council Secretariat in Brussels, gave an overview on structural characteristics of European foreign policy and explained the EU's external relations with respect to Latin America and Asia. Buck pointed out that the EU cannot be considered as a world power, however, globally powerful. The AIES organises regularly expert roundtables concerning European and security political questions.
AIES European Academy 2009
For the first time the European Academy which is organized by the Austria Institute for European and Security Studies took place from July 13th to July 18th in Langenlois, a lower Austrian wine town. Under the topic of "Multilateralism, Regionalism and Patterns of the early 21st Century" the 27 participants from 12 different states of the European Union and its neighboring countries focused on the following key questions:
- What kind of structural model will characterize the international order in the future?
- Which factors will influence the international order and in which way?
- Will the European Union become a more prominent and shaping global actor or will it become a marginalized power?
Numerous experts form different scientific disciplines were invited against the background of these questions. Already on the first day the thesis of a "World out of Balance" was introduced. Thereafter the lectures focused on important issues of international relations. Introductorily the topic of the first day was today's reality in International Relations, focusing on the role of the United Nations, the European Union as well as the relations between the latter and the United States of America. In this regard the question was whether the EU is even able to face the challenges of the 21st century. Furthermore the participants explored the development of regional integration in Asia and Latin America. The last area of subjects dealt with international challenges such as international terrorism, security of energy supplies and the consequences of the international financial crisis.
In the end the participants presented their results and answers to the questions asked at the beginning of the academy. On the one hand the role of the EU in international relations of the 21st century was seen as more important, while, on the other hand, it was judged to be increasingly negligible.
Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner new Honorary President
The AIES is pleased to welcome Dr. Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Member of the European Commission for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, as Honorary President of the institute.
Is a Common European Foreign Policy possible?
This question was discussed in the framework of the 143rd Bergedorf Round Table from June 12-14, 2009 in Berlin. The AIES was represented in this high ranking expert group by its Director of Research Franco Algieri. Read the full report in English on the web site of the Koerber Stiftung.
Workshop Series "Rediscovering Multilateralism: Toward a Cooperative Approach to Middle East Reform" in Washington D.C. and Berlin
Is the support of political reform processes in the Middle East a shared objective of the new U.S. administration, the European Union, and reformists in the Middle East? What are perspectives of future co-operation? The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) together with the American think tank "Project on Middle East Democracy" (POMED) is hosting a series of workshops in 2009 to tackle this question. The workshops aim at identifying converging interests in Europe, the United States and the Middle East with regard to political reform in the Middle East. At the end of the project the participants will come up with suggestions for governments in Washington and Europe as to how to support reform. The first workshop took place in Washington D.C. end of May 2009, involving 15 participants from Europe, the U.S. and the Middle East. The initial results of the first workshop were then discussed in an event at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Auswärtige Politik (DGAP) in Berlin in the beginning of June 2009. The next workshop will be held in Washington again in the fall of 2009. The results will then be published in a policy paper. AIES Associate Fellow Almut Möller is one of the European participants in the workshop series.
Symposium on the state of the EU
The Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) organised together with the Political Academy and the Diplomatic Academy a high-level symposium on the state of the EU on 9 May 2009. On the Europe Day, Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Commissioner for External Relations, Johannes Hahn, Federal Minister of Science and Michael Spindelegger, Austria's Foreign Minister discussed key questions about the European integration. Commisisoner Ferrero-Waldner emphasized that only a united Europe would be able to catalyze national interests of Member States and could be perceived as a credible actor on international stage. The vision of a sciences based European society was pointed out by Minister Hahn. Europe as a research location needs to be strengthened in order to secure the European Social Model. The Euro zone was considered a stability factor for Austria by Minister Spindelegger. The Lisbon Treaty would further enhance Europe's role in the world.
First issue of 'AIES Fokus"
AIES is proud to be present its new publication format 'AIES Fokus'. It will focus on current topics of European and Security Policy.
International Summer University in Vienna
For the first time, the AIES is co-operating with Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich. In the framework of the Munich International Summer University the AIES is hosting one part of the course European Studies in Vienna. In this context visits at international organisations located in Vienna are scheduled. Based on an interdisciplinary approach the historical development, the economic, societal and security political dimensions of the European integration project will be analysed in this course. Furthermore, it will be looked at the interests of sovereign states and their role as actors in shaping European policies. Students with different academic backgrounds and a general interest in European integration will benefit from each other in an intercultural and interdisciplinary learning process. Other participating institutes, apart from the AIES, are the Center for Applied Policy Research (C·A·P) in Munich and Europeum Institute for European Policy in Prague.
European Forum: Strategic challenges for the EU
On 21st November 2008 the 12th European Forum was hosted by the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy (AIES) in the festivity hall of the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna. The invited politicians, opinion leaders and European researchers discussed the topic "Strategic challenges for the EU". In brief, the outcome of the discussions of the 12th European Forum of the AIES already showed, what was eventually confirmed by the meeting of the European Council in Brussels: The EU is confronted with different challenges and crises. However, if efficient common strategies need to be developed, the EU proves to be advantageous when it comes to the protection of its member states.
European Academy 2008
From 14th to 18th July 2008 the AIES hosted its European Academy at "Schloss des Deutschen Ritterordens" in Gumpoldskirchen. 27 participants from 13 countries took part in the European Academy of the AIES in Gumpoldskirchen from 14th to 18th July 2008. Together with European, American and Asian experts of academia, politics and economics they had to work out answers to the following questions:
1. What are the characteristics of central players in international relations at the beginning of the 21st century?
2. How can the present security-political challenges be approached?
3. Which role does the EU play on the international stage?
The tasks were subdivided into three interconnected blocks. In the first block, the roles of actors and regions were analysed, taking the US, Russia, China, Japan as well as the Middle East as examples for countries defining the international policies of the present. The second block covered the aspects terror and energy security as challenges to defence and security policies. Here the special emphasis was placed on the European Security and Defence Policy as well as on the comparison of the strategic focuses of the EU and the US. The structure of the EU as an institution, development models and future scenarios for the European integration process marked the discussions of the third block.