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  • Author: Ansgar Belke, Anne Oeking, Ralph Setzer
  • Publication Date: 05-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The significant gains in export market shares made in a number of vulnerable euro-area crisis countries have not been accompanied by an appropriate improvement in price competitiveness. This paper argues that, under certain conditions, firms consider export activity as a substitute for serving domestic demand. The strength of the link between domestic demand and exports is dependent on capacity constraints. Our econometric model for six euro-area countries suggests domestic demand pressure and capacity-constraint restrictions as additional variables of a properly specified export equation. As an innovation to the literature, we assess the empirical significance through the logistic and the exponential variant of the non-linear smooth transition regression model. We find that domestic demand developments are relevant for the short-run dynamics of exports in particular during more extreme stages of the business cycle. A strong substitutive relationship between domestic and foreign sales can most clearly be found for Spain, Portugal and Italy, providing evidence of the importance of sunk costs and hysteresis in international trade.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Bohdana Dimitrovova
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: This paper looks at the dynamics affecting the development of civil society in Morocco within the context of the European Neighbourhood Policy. It explores cooperation mechanisms in three domains of civil society endeavour – women's rights, human rights and socio-economic rights. In each area, the paper examines the kinds of mechanisms and opportunities emerging for the promotion of civil society, and which forms of action and stances taken by civil society have been encouraged (or otherwise). The paper contends that the development of civil society has triggered different responses by the state and international community. While civil and political rights have preoccupied domestic and international actors, socio-economic rights have long been absent from their agendas. Yet it is argued here that shifting responsibility for issues in the socio-economic domain to civil society is highly problematic under the current circumstances of state building, and poses risks of further ruptures in Moroccan society.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Human Rights, Islam
  • Political Geography: Europe, North Africa, Morocco
  • Author: Elena Klitsounova
  • Publication Date: 04-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The EU advocates a policy that includes a great deal of human rights promotion and support for Russian NGOs. The question for EU policy-makers is no longer whether but how to manage NGO involvement in a way that induces necessary changes in Russia's human rights behaviour. This paper argues that current EU policies often fall short of their potential to develop the non-state transfer of European ideas, norms, and practices to Russia or to assist the development of the Russian NGO community. If the EU is to become a serious actor in the field of human rights promotion, it will have to find new and creative ways to communicate with Russians about human rights matters. This paper offers policy recommendations to adapt EU strategies to the current context of the EU Russia relationship and to redesign EU assistance programmes.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Non-Governmental Organization
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Evelien Brouwer
  • Publication Date: 04-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The recent proposals of the European Commission for a European Border Management Strategy are based on an almost blind faith in the use of large-scale databases, identification measures and biometrics for immigration and border control purposes. It is clear that these measures entail a risk to the protection of not only the right to privacy and the right to data protection, but also to the freedom of movement and the principle of non-discrimination. This paper by Evelien Brouwer, lecturer at the Law School of Utrecht University, considers the human rights implications of the Schengen Information System (SIS). Describing the case of Mr. and Mrs. Moon, who have been reported as “inadmissible” in the SIS for more than ten years, the difficulties for third country nationals trying to remedy a false or unlawful SIS report are highlighted. The Moon case illustrates that the outcome of national proceedings dealing with an SIS alert can be very different. The author concludes with recommendations to guarantee individuals' rights to effective remedies and to improve the position and powers of national courts.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Law
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Richard Youngs
  • Publication Date: 05-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The EU routinely asserts that the promotion of democracy and human rights is central to its international identity. However, while in some places the EU has a relatively strong record as a supporter of democratic values, it is failing to respond effectively to the emergence of a vastly more challenging environment for democracy promotion. This paper reveals serious limits across three strands of democracy policy – the magnitude of incentives offered in return for democratic change, the degree of critical pressure exerted for democratic reform and the scale of European democracy funding. Even where the EU is building on the initiatives it has pursued for the last two decades, the paper demonstrates that these policies fail to measure up to the challenges posed by the new international context.
  • Topic: Democratization, Human Rights, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eastern Europe
  • Author: Paul Brenton, Miriam Manchin
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: A key element of the EU's free trade and preferential trade agreements is the extent to which they deliver improved market access and so contribute to the EUs foreign policy objectives towards developing countries and neighbouring countries in Europe, including the countries of the Balkans. Previous preferential trade schemes have been ineffective in delivering improved access to the EU market. The main reason for this is probably the very restrictive rules of origin that the EU imposes, coupled with the costs of proving consistency with these rules. If the EU wants the 'Everything but Arms' agreement and free trade agreements with countries in the Balkans to generate substantial improvements in access to the EU market for products from these countries then it will have to reconsider the current rules of origin and implement less restrictive rules backed upon by a careful safeguards policy.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Economics, Government, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Migration, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Balkans
  • Author: Joanna Apap
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Achieving an integrated Europe involves political and social unity as much as economic integration. Thus, the issue of European citizenship is central to the debate about European integration. Union citizenship needs to be distinguished from national citizen ship. Every citizen of the Union enjoys a first circle of nationality rights within a member state and a second circle of new rights enjoyed in any member state of the EU. The presence of immigrants in Europe also raises wider questions for government policy in the field of citizenship. There are various issues that arise in the European context with respect to the boundaries of citizenship. One of the main questions in this regard is the extent to which the division between European Union citizens and third country nationals will continue to prevail.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Migration, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Paul Brenton, Anna Maria Pinna
  • Publication Date: 12-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: As in other industrialised countries, the manufacturing sector in Italy has recently experienced a substantial increase in the use of skilled relative to unskilled workers — skill upgrading. In this paper we estimate a model, based upon the notion of outsourcing, of the relative demand for skilled labour which allows identification of the roles of technological change and trade, the two main culprits, in skill upgrading. Compared to previous studies of Italy the model is applied to highly disaggregated industrial data and in addition the impact of trade is more precisely measured through the separate identification of import flows from low-wage labour abundant countries and those from OECD partners. Furthermore we also introduce a measure of trade variability. Our results show firstly that economic variables played little or no role in determining the relative demand for unskilled workers in the 1970s in Italy, reflecting the nature of Italian labour market institutions in the period. Subsequently, in the 1980s and 1990s, following some labour market reforms, we find that international competition, in terms of import penetration and the variability of trade prices, had a significant effect on the relative demand for blue-collar workers in Italy in skilled intensive sectors. In unskilled intensive sectors, such as textiles and clothing, where the impact of imports from low-wage countries might be expected to be more pronounced, we do not find a significant effect from imports but rather that the most important role has been played by technological change. The result is consistent with previous studies that indicate that Italian textile and clothing firms have remained internationally competitive by increasingly switching to high quality segments of the industry.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Migration, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Italy
  • Author: Joanna Apap
  • Publication Date: 12-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: During the 1990s, Justice and Home Affairs moved, in an unexpected way, to centre stage in the European debate. Concern had been growing about immigration policy since the Maastricht Treaty institutionalised the third pillar of the European Union. This concern had been stimulated by several factors – the persistence of irregular migration and tragic incidents, such as the one in Dover in July 2000 in which 58 Chinese nationals lost their lives trying to enter illegally into the United Kingdom, the need for immigrant workers in some sectors, and the spectre of an ageing European population. More generally, the Treaty of Amsterdam, since its entry into force in 1999, represents a major development in overall Justice and Home Affairs policy, and the implementation of the treaty provisions in Justice and Home Affairs was described as the next major EU initiative after the single currency.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Migration, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Paul Brenton
  • Publication Date: 11-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: This paper discusses the continuing importance of borders, even within the EU, for the volume of international trade and global capital flows. It suggests that a range of factors, including the nature of the commercial, social and legal fabric of a country and the structure of consumers' preferences, act to constrain cross-border exchanges relative to internal transactions. Hence, whilst the process of globalisation may continue, there are likely to be distinct limits to the extent of economic integration. This entails that the traditional roles of governments in OECD countries in providing social welfare and regulating the market economy within national boundaries will not be seriously undermined. However, the situation may differ in developing countries where existing social and legal institutions may be compromised by globalisation rather than acting to dampen its impact.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Migration, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe