Knud Erik Jorgensen discusses European Foreign Policy and Policy Making

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    • 00:01


    • 00:11

      KNUD JORGENSEN: Knud Jorgensen, Universityof Aarhus in Denmark.I would explain the field of studyas European foreign policy.It is a very ambiguous term.It can mean both EU foreign policyand national foreign policies and the interplay

    • 00:34

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: between these two levels of policymaking.Foreign policy traditions are not research traditions,but it is political traditions.So it is different segments of the policy-making world.And there are typically four or five major foreign policy

    • 00:58

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: traditions.They are very important in terms of organizingthe politics of policy-making.And they give some direction to where European foreign policyshould be heading.

    • 01:20

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: The key triggers for the changes that wehave experienced-- well, there are maybe four different.There are financial constraints.Not every country, European country,can afford to have the same ambitious foreign policyas the country might have had in the past.There are some policy failures, where policymakers have learned

    • 01:42

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: that they've organized European foreign policyin an inefficient fashion.There is the fact that the United Statesis to some degree withdrawing from Europe.And it automatically gave European decision-makersmore responsibility.And with more responsibility, they

    • 02:03

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: have to organize the politics or the process of policy-makingin a different fashion.Then of course, there is the fourth factorchanging the process.And that is the decision to create a European ExternalAction Service, a kind of European ministryof foreign affairs.

    • 02:29

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: The crisis of multi-lateralism is a fact.But if that means that regional institutions at the timehave passed, I doubt quite a bit.In the first place, multi-lateralismis both multi-lateralism at the global leveland at the regional level.

    • 02:50

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: At the global level, we have such multi-lateral institutionsas the United Nations and the World Trade Organization.And at the regional level, we have multi-lateral settingssuch as the European Union, the Southeast Asia cooperationorganization, and several more.

    • 03:13

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: And some of these can be said to be in crisis.Others are thriving quite a bit.So any critical answer has to be quite variatedand it has to be full of facets.At the same time, one can argue thatthese multi-lateral institutions have been in crisis before,

    • 03:35

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: so to be in crisis is nothing new to multi-lateralism.In the 1930s, the League of Nations was in severe crisis.And we know what was the result of that crisis.It was the Second World War.We have also seen very severe crisisin the European Union back in the 1960s when the European

    • 03:59

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: Union was hardly working for some time.So there are crises, and they should of coursebe acknowledged as such.But there are also multi-lateral institutions that are quite OK.The relationship between the EU and Russia

    • 04:22

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: is an area where more research has to be done,because we know what is going on.But we don't know really the reasonsfor the actions taken, the decisions taken on both sides.We don't know exactly why it is that Russia findsit necessary to invade Crimea.

    • 04:42

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: We don't know what they are up to in eastern Ukraineand so on and so forth.And we also don't actually know why European Union adoptssanctions.Is it just in order to do something?Is there a belief that sanctions make a difference?And concerning the issue of what could possibly be done,

    • 05:06

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: research, of course, has no direct answer,because research is describing, analyzing situations,processes, and so on.It is not to take political decisions.But research can point to what kind of policy choicesthat have characterized relations before.And some of the policies, policy options that are available

    • 05:30

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: include appeasement.Pretend that Russia might be behaving badly,but we have to accommodate to keep some relationshipand then hope the best.A second policy towards Russia or the Soviet Unionhas been containment.So should that include the deployment

    • 05:53

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: of European forces, military forces, in the Baltic states,in Georgia, in Ukraine?That is an issue for policy-makers to consider.The Second World War started off with a policy of alignmentwith Poland.So alliances in the making, there are many different policy

    • 06:17

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: options.And there are probably none that are particularly good,so policymakers have to choose between a numberof bad solutions.That is, the relationship between the EU and NATOis a relationship full of potentials.

    • 06:38

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: And it has been so for the last 25 years,since the end of the Cold War.And for many various reasons, those promiseshave never fully been cashed in.And there are many different factorsthat would explain why that is the case.On the NATO side, there is a member

    • 06:59

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: in the southeast corner of Europe named Turkeythat has been an obstacle to further cooperationwith the European Union.On the European Union side, thereis a member-state west of the English Channel, the UnitedKingdom, that for various reasonshave been an obstacle to further EU engagementin military operations.

    • 07:21

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: So you can say that the European Union and NATO aretwo organizations that live in the same city,but they are still sort of living in worlds apart.The increased threat of terror has caused some change

    • 07:42

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: at the European level, but surprisingly limited change.Most anti-terror policies have beenadopted in national settings, so that is wherethe changes have been made.And some of these changes includescreening of airline passengers and all sorts

    • 08:04

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: of sort of small policies, but they add upto something bigger.And the changes are reduced mobility if there is moremonitoring both of persons, but alsoof companies that might be involvedin terrorist activities.

    • 08:26

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: These days it's very difficult to open a bank accountin different European country, because thatmight be used for money laundering or moneytransferring, trafficking of money.So there have been quite many measures adopted,but as I mentioned previously, mainly at the national level.The exchange of intelligence concerning terrorist activities

    • 08:48

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: have so far been fairly limited, which again is quite surprisinggiven that there are frequent incidents, incidencesof terrorist activities.Climate change is one of the biggest and mosturgent challenges that European decision-makers face.

    • 09:12

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: And they have a long history alreadyof actually being able to act on a European--as a common European policy.Without the European Union, it is very difficultto imagine the Kyoto Protocol beingadopted in the first place.And the European Union was also very influential

    • 09:33

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: in pushing Russia into ratifying the Kyoto Protocol, whichwas a necessary condition for the Protocolto enter into force.Lately, the European Union, due to its avant garde statusin the world society in the area of global climate change,

    • 09:55

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: has been maybe modernized a little bit.But that is only because they are so advanced in regulationsadopted that the more sort of slow-moving countries,like the United States, China, India,find it difficult to talk with the Europeans.

    • 10:16

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: This is now also going to change.Most recently, the United States has adopted some regulationsin the area of climate change policiesthat is moving in the European direction.Then of course, you can argue that also a problem with Russiaand the import of oil and gas from Russia

    • 10:39

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: is sort of prompting the European decision-makers to payincreased attention to renewable energies, whichhas a positive side effect on climate change.So in a sense, there is sort of a win-win.You can solve two problems with just one policy.

    • 11:06

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: China's rise in terms of economic and potentially alsomilitary power is a tendency thatwill only increase, it seems, in the coming years,so it will always and should always be very high upon the European agenda.If I'm not mistaken, most European embassies in Beijing

    • 11:28

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: is also among the biggest embassiesthat the European Union and its member-statesare running throughout the world, possibly onlyon par with those embassies that are present in Washington, DC,in the United States.So there is investment in terms of diplomatic personnelto follow events inside China and try

    • 11:51

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: to figure out what might be adopted as policies tomorrowand the day after.So China has been elevated up on the European agendato a degree that is quite remarkable.And this is in stark contrast to the 1990s,where China-- it was well known that China was rising

    • 12:12

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: and was more and more influentialthroughout the world.But at the same time, the European decision-makerswere so preoccupied with the crisis in the Western Balkansthat that took all the time.And then they just left a few minutesto talk about the big China issue.Now it has been more balanced.

    • 12:36

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: One should expect that the rise of the EuropeanUnion as an international actor wouldhave had some impact on the degree to which researchscholars theorize about European foreign policy.But paradoxically, that is not the case.Studies remain predominantly empiricaland without that much interest in applying theories

    • 13:01

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: or developing theories.This is a big puzzle.And I don't know exactly why it is the casethat my colleagues do not pay more attentionto theoretical issues.One should expect that there would be an increasedattention to synthesizing knowledgeabout what the European Union has been doing internationally

    • 13:24

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: over time and how that role has changed over time as well,but there is more to be done.Key thinkers and theories is for mea constant source of inspiration.

    • 13:45

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: I draw from a very wide group of theorists, of key thinkers.When I do an analysis in a constructivist orientation,I very much to draw on the work of John Ruggie, whomI think is a brilliant scholar.

    • 14:06

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: I draw on a philosopher like John Searle, whocan express very complicated philosophical issuesin plain English, which is a wonderful ability.In a different way I also have found a lot of inspirationin the work of Andrew Moravcsik, not because I agree with him,but because I disagree with him.

    • 14:28

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: But even people that you disagree with,you can learn a lot from.Still on the American side, I have found a lot of inspirationin the work of Henry Nau, who has been quiteinnovative in merging or combining studies of power

    • 14:50

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: and studies of identity.This combination of power and identity I thinkis extremely useful.The field of European foreign policyhas changed quite significantly during the last decade or so.

    • 15:11

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: It has changed in the sense that institutional issues have not--have not got the attention that they used to get previously.So previously, various institutional approacheswere used.And the focal point of research was very muchinstitutional dynamics.

    • 15:32

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: Now there's more focus on European foreign policywith emphasis on the term of "policy."That is, how does the European Unionaim at achieving political objectives by employmentof various instruments or means?So policy study has come in, and institutional analyses

    • 15:53

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: have gone down.This is one of the, I think, main characteristicsof the most recent trends.Then of course, in addition to that,there is a kind of undercurrent of studiesthat are, after all, theoretically informed,so that knowledge become more solid.

    • 16:13

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: It is small and sort of superficial description.And the study of European foreign policyhas also changed in the sense that comparative studieshave become more frequent.Before it was very much studies of single policies.It was the study of single cases.

    • 16:36

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: But increasingly and fortunately, I think,comparative analysis has been introduced most recently,in an example by Thomas Risse and Tanja Borzel,who studied the European Unions' policy towards the near abroad.But in addition to study the European Union'snear abroad policy, which of course is

    • 16:57

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: a highly topical issue to do research on,they compared with how Russia and howthe United States was developing policies to the same region.And they concluded that the European Union did not sort ofperform terribly well, did not influence developmentsin Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, for example.

    • 17:20

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: But the same applies to Russia and the United States,so they all perform really badly.This kind of insight would not have been possible before,where it was just a focus on the European Union.Then of course, we could all deplore that the European Unionwould not perform any better and don'tknow if it is kind of comfort that others perform as badly.

    • 17:46

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: The main debates in the area of European foreign policyis probably the link between research and policy relevance.At least that is an issue that is increasingly coming up.And I guess the European Union research programs

    • 18:07

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: have contributed to that, because they are always veryfocused on applied science.How can research be helpful for the EuropeanUnion and its decision-makers in termsof supporting political decision-making,providing knowledge to decision-makers about the worldand what can possibly be done.

    • 18:29

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: So this is one area of discussion.And of course, different scholarshave different priorities or preferences.Some prefer to stay pure scientistsand observe the world but not engage with itor provide policy prescription.Others are less purist and are ready to engage

    • 18:49

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: with the policy world or the world of diplomacy.Then of course, there is evergreen tension or debatesbetween those who prefer to do descriptive studies and thosewho have a certain degree of theoretical interest.That is a tension or debate that will probably never go away.

    • 19:09

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: It will always be around.But the balance might have changed recentlyin favor of the more theoretically-inclined people.Of course, that can also go too farso it becomes just theory for theory's own sake.So there are two extremes, the very superficial descriptionand the very theoretically-oriented.

    • 19:40

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: In a strange paradoxical way, youcan argue that international relations is both aheadand behind the curve of current sort of norms.It is ahead in terms of being a discipline thatis aware of the fact that beyond any or every national border

    • 20:03

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: lays a world.Many political science disciplinesare not aware of that.Comparative politics typically stop at the border.Political theory issues of justice or such thingsusually are only about what happens inside a community.

    • 20:24

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: And that is also the fact-- that is alsothe case for a discipline such as sociology.So international relations is aware of the factthat there is a world and that world hangs togetherin some sometimes complicated ways.So international relations is behind the curvein a certain imbalance between the employment of more

    • 20:48

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: rigorous methodology and on the other hand, that huge topicthat is the topic of international relations, namelythe world.Now, the world is very big and full of issuesto be researched.At the same time, the number of peoplethat have a specialization in international relations

    • 21:09

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: is relatively small compared to comparative politicsor political theory or any other of the political science or lawor any other social sciences.So the topic is tall, but the resources available--this means that there's only so much that we can do.

    • 21:30

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: But given that we are few and we have achievedwhat we have achieved, I think we have beendoing sort of a critical job.New directions of research for me personally, Iwill of course hope that my application for a Horizon 2020

    • 21:52

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: research grant will be given to me so that I can spendthe next three years on a wonderful and very fascinatingtopic, namely the relationship between power and values.That research project is unlikely to be funded dueto very fierce competition and due to the declining

    • 22:13

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: interest in the European Union, interest also--the interest in social sciences when the European Union is alsorapidly declining too a degree where the social scientistsalmost vanished from the research grant schemesthat the European Union provides.

    • 22:34

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: That's of course, a pity, and notleast at a time when funding to social sciences in Chinais booming.So sooner or later, we will have to align ourselveswith Chinese scholars, which of course in itselfis a challenge, but also a great opportunity.I would like to really do this research on power and values

    • 22:56

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: because it's very much the values determinewhat power that the European union has available,what purpose it will be used for.So it's both a normative topic, but it's alsoa topic that has these two ends that I hope I can make meet.

    • 23:24

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: For the European Union and for European foreign policy,the immediate future or the foreseeable futureis full of challenges.And it's not just small challenges.It's really big challenges.Right on the doorstep towards the east we have Russia.And there are very difficult relations

    • 23:48

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: to cultivate to possibly repair some of the damage thathas been done.Further east lays China, which of course is far away.But at the same time, disturbances in the Far East,with also Japan having a more assertive rolein foreign affairs, will automatically

    • 24:09

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: have some impact on the situation in Europe.Now towards the west, the United Statesis withdrawing more and more from Europe.And that put sort of an increasedburden of responsibility on the European decision-makers.Now, that is just some of the peak actorsand what they are doing and how they

    • 24:29

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: are behaving that is a challenge to the European Union.Then there are the famous big processes,the processes of globalization thathas to some degree to be managed or regulated,also a huge challenge.There is the climate change that we talked aboutbefore that will not go away from the political agenda.

    • 24:51

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: There is currently the huge migration crisis or refugeecrisis.And in that area, it seems that European action hasbeen very limited, so what existedin terms of the Schengen Agreementhas been disbanded or abandoned and replacedby national decision-making in the capitols

    • 25:15

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: of various European countries.So in some areas there's progressin terms of the ability to take European decisions.But in other areas, there is definitelya decline that is going on.So it will be very interesting to follow which of the twotendencies will have sort of the upper hand in the years

    • 25:36

      KNUD JORGENSEN [continued]: to come.[MUSIC PLAYING]

Knud Erik Jorgensen discusses European Foreign Policy and Policy Making

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Professor Knud Jorgensen discusses European foreign policy and policy making. European foreign policy can mean foreign policy of the E.U. or of individual nations. Jorgensen discusses how he got into the field, the important issues in the field, and international relations.

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Knud Erik Jorgensen discusses European Foreign Policy and Policy Making

Professor Knud Jorgensen discusses European foreign policy and policy making. European foreign policy can mean foreign policy of the E.U. or of individual nations. Jorgensen discusses how he got into the field, the important issues in the field, and international relations.

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