Europe as a Global Actor

Date & time

Sep 27, 2007, 4:00-5:30 pm EDT


Weill Hall

Zaki Laïdi, senior research fellow, Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales (CERI); professor, Sciences Po and the College of Europe (Bruges); and special advisor to former EU Trade Commissioner for Trade.

What does Europe really want? What worldview does it hold? What preferences does it defend? What likelihood is there of Europe being able to share them with the rest of the world?

Professor Laïdi will examine the meaning of European power and argue that Europe will not be a superpower as long as it is not the ultimate guarantor of its own security. If European Union defence policy does not tackle this problem, it is reasonable to think that Europe will remain a soft power, but a soft power that must be taken seriously. So if the power does not have the strength to make itself heard, what instruments does it have? Arguing that the power of Europe is based on what he calls the preference for norms, Professor Laïdi will try to explore what ethical, political, social and cultural preferences Europe has; and how the European model of preference for norms is confronted by the political state sovereignties such as USA, China, India, and Russia.

Hosted by the Center for European Studies-European Union Center as part of the lecture series, Conversations on Europe. Co-sponsored by the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.