European Futures

European Futures

Five Possible Scenarios for 2010

Gilles Bertrand, Anna Michalski and Lucio R. Pench

This book is an innovative and highly original exercise in scenario building, the aim of which is to investigate the future of Europe. The scenarios investigated by the authors include ‘triumphant markets’, ‘turbulent neighbourhoods’, ‘the hundred flowers’, ‘shared responsibilities’ and ‘creative societies’. These are five coherent and thought-provoking images of Europe in 2010. Rather than present a definitive picture of the future of Europe, the authors highlight the range of possible futures, and the factors and actors that are likely to shape them. Written in a narrative style, the scenarios are grounded in a rigorous analysis of the main trends affecting Europe’s future, including demography, technology, globalisation and post-modernity.

Chapter 5: Scenario 5: Turbulent Neighbourhoods

Gilles Bertrand, Anna Michalski and Lucio R. Pench

Subjects: politics and public policy, european politics and policy


CHAPTER 5 2/10/00 3:44 pm Page 1 5. Scenario no. 5: Turbulent Neighbourhoods ‘Killed in action - for Europe.’ The recent Gda nsk European Council decided to erect, in every capital city, a ´ white stone monument bearing these words in all the official languages of the Union, together with the names of the 10,000 soldiers who have died in action since the turn of the century. The special editions issued by Europe’s press looking back on the first decade of the millennium, from 2000 to 2010, reveal just how preoccupied the Union has been with external matters. The European Security Council has deployed troops on four occasions to restore or maintain order in its own backyard. A preoccupation with security has become part of everyday life. The Eurovigil scheme, set up after the terrorist bombs in the spring of 2004, is the most obvious example, but it is just one sign of the fear Europeans feel towards the world beyond their borders and their anxiety about what the future holds for them. This siege mentality goes a long way towards explaining the stagnation in domestic policy: Member States’ governments, particularly the larger ones, have won back much political capital with recent military successes, but not enough to convince an anxious public of the need for wide-scale economic and social reform. Over the past ten years, only two or three Member States have really stayed the course. Twenty years after the end of the Cold War, political instability is...

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