EU as a global actor in sustainability policy – Online-workshop –

Thomas Hoerber (EU*Asia Institute, ESSCA) and Kristina Kurze (Andrássy University Budapest) organised an online research workshop on the 27th and 28th of May 2020.

Originally to be hosted by ESSCA and the Adrássy University in Budapest, Covid-19 turned this Workshop into a virtual event. On 27-28 of May, an international group of young researchers and established scholars shared their exciting work and insights on the external dimension of EU sustainability policies. In addition, the online Workshop attracted an extraordinary number of interested guests, including students from ESSCA and Andrássy University Budapest as well as scholars from around the world. Hence, as a benefit of the online format, this workshop enabled a highly international and interdisciplinary group of students and researchers to engage in a timely discussion on the global sustainability transition.


Discussions and Topics:


The Workshop was divided into four panels that addressed the EU’s role from various angles and in different geographical spaces, including for instance the Western Balkans and the Southern neighbourhood. In addition, ‘least-likely-cases’ that are often neglected in EU sustainability research – such as Russia, Columbia and the Middle East – were also addressed. Moreover, different policy instruments and actors – such as the European Investment Bank – were analysed in view of their contribution to sustainability objectives. All of these case studies revealed context-specific deficits of the EU’s external sustainability policies. Nevertheless, papers adopting a global comparative perspective concluded the EU still acts as a ‘green leader’ at the international level. For more details on the topics and presenters please see the full programme here. Interestingly, participants also linked EU sustainability policies to current debates on a ‘green recovery’ and more precisely to the European Green Deal.



Against this backdrop, Helen Dyrhauge and Kristina Kurze aim to further developing this theme in a common publication project. Participants of this Workshop as well as the Roskilde Workshop, that was held last year, are invited to contribute to an edited volume entitled “The European Green Deal in the making: EU sustainability policies at home and abroad”. It is proposed for publication in the Routledge Book Series Governance of Sustainability in Europe edited by Thomas Hoerber and Jenny Fairbrass. In October 2020, a paper writing workshop will be held to further pursue this publication project.


Thomas Hoerber, EU*Asia Institute, ESSCA School of Management of Angers

Kristina Kurze, Andrássy University Budapest

Helene Dyrhauge, Roskilde University of Denmark

Gabriel Weber, EU*Asia Institute, ESSCA School of Management of Bordeaux