Edited by Maria João Rodrigues
The Lisbon Agenda is Europe’s attempt to address the challenges posed by an evolving global economy. An ambitious choice was made in 2000 to promote a highly competitive knowledge and innovation-based economy to ensure sustainable growth, more and better jobs, social cohesion and respect for the environment. What is speciﬁc to the path adopted by Europe is not the prioritization of a knowledge-intensive economy – which is now found in many other regions of the world; it is, rather, the ambition to combine that pursuit with other features, to encourage balanced and sustainable development in accordance with European values. It is this particular combination of goals that is Europe’s contribution to bringing about a richer experience of prosperity. The Lisbon Agenda, however, involves deep transformations of Europe’s economies and societies. What is at stake is not just the shift towards a highknowledge and low-carbon economy, but the reform of a broad range of institutions, from universities, social protection and employment services, to public administration, ﬁnancial systems and businesses as well. Since its inception, the Lisbon Agenda has redirected priorities in a wide range of policies, including information society, research, innovation, education, employment, social protection, environmental, single market, competition and ﬁscal policies. New initiatives have been launched at the European level, and several reforms are under way at the national level, albeit with great variations across Member States. More recently, the implications of the Lisbon Agenda for the ﬁnancial and institutional instruments of the Union and for European Union (EU) external...