The Friday Morning Lecture Series presents:

"The Future of the EU" presented by Vivien A. Schmidt
Friday, September 13, 2013
at 10 a.m. in the McCarthy Meeting Room

Will the European Union disintegrate? Will the Eurozone fail? Vivien Schmidt, Professor at Boston University and Director of the Center for the Study of Europe, feels that neither will be the case. But the EU and its member states do have to make serious changes to the current construct, which, according to Schmidt, allowed a rather minor crises to escalate and expand from one country, to an entire region. The basic economic structure of the EU is sound, she argues. In fact, the Eurozone's economic fundamentals are mostly better than in the UK and the USA. The main problems involve the hesitant leadership in the European Union, the region's complex set of institutions that do not allow for the  swift decisive decision-making that is needed in times of crises, and the policies of austerity that have been the main cause of both the slowing economic growth across Europe along with the increasing political volatility. What’s the way forward? Amongst other things, Prof. Schmidt stresses the need not just to focus on 'structural reforms' of labor markets and the welfare state but to  switch to policies that produce growth through social as well as economic investment.  She also suggests that deeper political union cannot succeed without great social as well as economic 'solidarity.'

Vivien A. Schmidt is Jean Monnet Chair of European Integration, Professor of International Relations and Political Science, and founding director of the Center for the Study of Europe at Boston University. She has been a visiting professor or visiting scholar at major European universities and has published ten books and over 100 articles on European political economy, institutions, and democracy, as well as lately on the Eurozone crisis.  Recent books include the forthcoming Resilient Liberalism in Europe’s Political Economy (co-edited, Cambridge 2013), Debating Political Identity and Legitimacy in the European Union (co-edited, Routledge 2011), Democracy in Europe (Oxford 2006; updated in French, La Découverte 2010), and The Futures of European Capitalism (Oxford 2002).  Professor Schmidt is former chair of the European Union Studies Association—USA.  Among recent distinctions, she was awarded a doctorate honoris causa from the Free University of Brussels, held the Franqui Interuniversity Chair of Belgium, and was Senior Visiting Research Scholar at the Free University of Berlin.   She received her B.A. cum laude from Bryn Mawr College, her M.A. and Ph.D from the University of Chicago, and also attended Sciences Po, Paris.

Link to Vivien Schmidt's blog at http://blogs.bu.edu/vschmidt/blog/