EU Enlargement: More than a box-ticking exercise

Think tank representatives from the Western Balkans visit Berlin

11/06/2012 - 15/06/2012 | 09:00 - 18:00 | | Invitation only

Category: Balkans

Policy analysts from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia take part in the 2012 TRAIN programme, which supports regional think tanks in the development and realization of their policy research. While the participating institutes pursue research in different thematic areas, their work shares a common reference point in the EU integration of the Western Balkan countries.

In addition to dealing with their specific research topics, the participants discussed their views on the EU integration process with Berlin-based policy analysts. In this context, criticism was not only voiced against the governments of the countries aspiring for EU membership - also the EU should not limit the association process to a “box-ticking exercise” while ignoring whether reforms are actually put into practice. EU enlargement was also the subject of an exchange with German institutions and decision makers.

The visit by the policy analysts is part of a series of seminars for this year’s TRAIN programme (Think Tanks Providing Research and Advice through Interaction and Networking). Supported by the German Federal Foreign Office (Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe), TRAIN aims at fostering policy dialogue between think tanks and political actors in the Western Balkans. Following the two workshops in Belgrade and Berlin, the participants will discuss the outcome of their policy research with EU representatives in Brussels in September.

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