Dr. Claire Demesmay

Head of Program, Franco-German Relations Program

Areas of Expertise

  • Franco-German relations
  • French domestic and European policy
  • Migration and integration policy in France and Germany
  • Citizenship and identity debates in Europe


English, French


Email: demesmay@dgap.org

Claire Demesmay has been head of the DGAP’s Franco-German Relations Program since February 2009.

She was previously research assistant at the Study Committee for Franco-German Relations (Cerfa) at the Institut français des relations internationales (Ifri) in Paris (2002-2009) and taught French and Francophone studies at the Technical University Dresden (1998-2002).

She studied political philosophy in Dijon and at Paris 4 Sorbonne. She obtained a PhD within the framework of a French-German co-tutelle on “Political Liberalism and the Future of the Nation-State” at the University of Paris 4 Sorbonne and the Center for French Studies at the Technical University of Berlin.


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Selected Publications

France: The Paralyzed Country
Claire Demesmay on Franco-German tensions and the economic crisis next door
by Claire Demesmay
Five Questions, May 6, 2012
France: The Paralyzed Country
The mountain of French debt continues to grow. So does unemployment. Competitiveness remains a weak point. Germany’s most important partner in the EU is in deep economic crisis. President François Hollande has now been in office for a full year, but French approval ratings for him have fallen sharply. Germans are concerned not only about the French government’s reform efforts, which are far from successful, but also by the anti-German comments coming from within Hollande’s Socialist Party.
Category: Economy and Finance, Bilateral Relations, France, Germany
Elysée Treaty Turns 50: Golden Anniversary Hangover
The current imbalance in Franco-German relations hurts everyone
by Claire Demesmay, Ronja Kempin
Elysée Treaty Turns 50: Golden Anniversary Hangover
A crisis in Franco-German relations has arrived, just in time for the celebration of 50th anniversary of the Elysée Treaty. This cannot be chalked up to the weakness of the French economy alone; the focus on budgetary questions inside the relationship has also advanced the inequality. Three recommendations to rekindle the romance between these two partners
Category: Bilateral Relations, European Union, Germany, France, Western Europe, Europe
German and French Mediterranean Policy
Despite a European framework, national approaches persist
by Claire Demesmay
Allemagne d’aujourd’hui, July-September 2012, p. 185-195
German and French policies vis-à-vis Mediterranean neighbor countries continue to be driven by different motives – despite the fact that there has been a common EU policy for the region since the 1990s. Both countries have their own historical links to the region and maintain a special economic and strategic relationship with North Africa. However, the Arab Spring uprisings have made the need for a reevaluation of the EU framework more urgent.
Category: Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, Mediterranean Sea/Mediterranean area, France, Germany
A New Homer For Europe?
The Merkozy era of kisses is over
by Claire Demesmay
A New Homer For Europe?
“Merkozy” has been history since the French presidential elections. Francois Hollande wants to steer Europe on a different course than his predecessor, whether in fiscal or economic policy. This will have an impact on Franco-German cooperation: Can a new “Homer” establish an equal partnership that can steer Europe through the crisis?
Category: European Union, France, Western Europe, Europe
Crossing Borders
Rethinking the European Union’s Neighborhood Policies
by Almut Möller, Cornelius Adebahr, Claire Demesmay, Carsten Främke, Lucas Lypp, Marie-Lena May, Stefan Meister, Katrin Sold, Marek Souček, Ulrike Stern, Marcel Viëtor, Natasha Wunsch
DGAPanalyse 2, August 18, 2011, 100 pp.
Crossing Borders
The debt crisis calls for the EU’s full attention – and threatens to supplant the fact that urgent action is needed on Europe’s periphery. The revolutions in North Africa demand answers; further EU enlargement needs to be planned and implemented. There are many common topics that link the European Union and its neighbors, from energy to migration. Thus, cross-border space must be created in which EU policies on a range of topics can be further developed
Category: European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), Eastern Partnership, European Union, Europe, Eastern Europe
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