CFSP and CSDP after Lisbon: Facing the Challenge of a Multipolar World

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GR:EEN Policy Brief 3
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This policy brief draws on emerging findings and policy recommendations from the Policy Platform on “The EU CFSP in a Multipolar World”, organized in Rome on May 17th-18th 2012 in the Framework Programme 7 project GR:EEN. This platform brought together 31 globally selected researchers, academics and think tankers.

The Lisbon Treaty entered into force on 1 December 2009. The turbulent process which accompanied its redaction and ratification fuelled expectations of a more efficient system of EU foreign policy making. Since then, the EU has faced important challenges, which reveal the centrality of setting up a sound strategy on how to deal with a mutating international environment. A new constellation of power at the global level, institutional reforms, social and political unrests, economic and financial instability, both in Europe and in its immediate neighbourhood, have profoundly challenged the newly established architecture which deals with foreign affairs.

With the Lisbon arrangements up and running now, both in Brussels and the Delegations, the important task of setting up clear strategic priorities for the EU’s external action seem still to be vague and imprecise. How the EU should deal with instability; how to deal best with NATO and Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) assets, and how to reform multilateral international institutions remain open to questions.