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Programmes

The Connecting Europe programme is a joint initiative of EPC and Stiftung Mercator, launched in 2017.
Connecting Europe enables projects and organisations supported by Stiftung Mercator to actively engage with EU policymakers in Brussels. The programme focuses on joint activities on the future of Europe, democracy, youth, climate, migration and other key issues. Through such activities, Connecting Europe fosters an open, constructive dialogue between Member States and decision-makers in Brussels. It promotes sustainable exchanges between civil society initiatives on the ground and the policy community in Brussels. The project aims to enhance mutual understanding between EU countries and to make a positive contribution to the cohesion of the European project.

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Sophie Pornschlegel
Project Leader of ‘Connecting Europe’ and Senior Policy Analyst

The Europe in the World programme scrutinises the impact of a changing international system on Europe and probes how the EU and its member states can leverage their untapped potential to advance their interests and values on a regional and global level. It thus examines the EU’s relations with major powers, such as the United States, China, and Russia, and how Europe can contribute to a rules-based global order. Secondly, the programme focuses on the role of the EU in fostering reform, resilience and stability in neighbouring regions and looks closely at developments in Turkey and Ukraine, among other countries. Thirdly, the programme examines how the EU can strengthen its security in the face of terrorism, violent extremism, as well as hybrid and cyber threats. It also seeks to advance the debate on Europe’s defence policy.
Giovanni Grevi
Head of Europe in the World programme
The Europe’s Political Economy (EPE) Programme is dedicated to covering topics related to EU economic policy, in a context of increasing globalisation and rapid technological change. From an intra-EU point of view, the Programme provides expertise on reforming and strengthening the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and regional economies; ensuring a holistic approach to industrial policy; supporting the Single Market and digital policy; as well as optimising the use of the EU budget and its programmes. Within the international context, the Programme focuses on trade policy and multilateral governance systems. The Programme’s team is also a skilled analyst fn the process of Brexit and the long-term relationship between the United Kingdom and the EU.
The activities under this Programme are often carried out in cooperation with other EPC Programmes, with whom there are overlaps and common interests. For example, this is the case for work related to Brexit and differentiated integration, skills and labour markets, sustainability and strategic autonomy.
Fabian Zuleeg
Chief Executive and Chief Economist; Head of Europe's Political Economy
The European Migration and Diversity  (EMD) Programme provides independent expertise  on European migration and asylum policies. The EMD Programme's analyses seek to contribute to sustainable and responsible policy solutions and  are aimed at promoting e a positive and constructive dialogue on migration.
The programme follows  the policy debate taking a multidisciplinary approach,  examining both the legal and political aspects shaping European migration policies.  EMD analysts focus, amongst other topics, on the reform of the Common European Asylum System; the management of the EU’s external borders; cooperation with countries of origin and transit; the integration of beneficiaries of international protection into host societies; the links between migration and populism; the development of resettlement and legal pathways; and the EU's free movement acquis. The EMD team benefits from a strong network of academics, NGO representatives and policymakers, who contribute regularly to publications and policy events.
Marie de Somer
Head of European Migration and Diversity programme
The European Politics and Institutions programme covers the EU’s institutional architecture, governance and policymaking to ensure that it can move forward and respond to the challenges of the 21st century democratically and effectively. It also monitors and analyses political developments at the EU level and in the member states, discussing the key questions of how to involve European citizens in the discussions over the Union’s future and how to win their support for European integration. The programme has a special focus on enlargement policy towards the Western Balkans, questions of EU institutional reform and illiberal trends in European democracies.
Corina Stratulat
Head of European Politics and Institutions programme
The Programme is structured around the following priorities:
• Strengthening the social dimension of EU policies and governance for upward social convergence.
• Towards a modern and inclusive labour market.
• Making European welfare states and social protection systems ‘future-fit’ in the light of ongoing labour market transformation.
• Investing in human capital for greater well-being and less inequality, with a particular focus on health.

The EPC’s work on health - mainly through the long-standing partnership with Johnson & Johnson under the CHES banner - has a particular focus on the ethical aspects, especially issues related to access, affordability and patient choice.
The activities under this Programme are closely integrated with other EPC focus areas, especially those related to migration and the economy, with a view to providing more ‘joined-up’ policy solutions.
Claire Dhéret
Head of Social Europe & Well-Being programme
The Sustainable Prosperity for Europe programme explores the foundations and drivers for a more sustainable and competitive European economy. While the climate crisis is a complex challenge to be addressed, non-action is not an option. While the economic and societal cost of environmental problems is often ignored, this can no longer continue. The EU has the basis to lead in ambitious and smarter regulation and solutions that address the biggest sustainability challenges of today and looming crises of tomorrow. The programme focuses on areas where working together across borders and sectors can bring significant benefits for the EU member states, businesses and citizens, and thus ensure prosperity for years to come.
Annika Hedberg
Head of Sustainable Prosperity for Europe programme

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