INTRODUCCION AL THINK TANK IEA.
During the Euro crisis more than a few people within the Eurozone have posited that their country would be better off if it were independent and had its own currency. Others from outside the Eurozone have used the crisis to raise fears about the lack of independence when it comes to economic and monetary policies of each of the individual member statesin order to awaken the anti-European sentiment in their countries.
Durante la crisis del Euro, no han sido pocos los que, desde dentro de la propia eurozona, han planteado que su país estaría mejor si fuera independiente y tuviera su propia moneda. Otros, desde fuera de la eurozona, han usado la crisis para despertar los miedos a la falta de independencia en materia de política económica y monetaria de cada uno de los países miembros y azuzarasí el sentimiento antieuropeo en sus países.
Namely, the idea that the Union, together with other international organizations, is somehow responsible for the hardships they now endure, has taken root in certain parts of the population of those Southern European countries which have been the object of a financial rescue. This has led to an outbreak of nationalism causing people not to identify with the European Union and causing certain politicians to sell the idea to their countrymen that they are not Europe.
Much in the same way, the idea has spread amongst the un-rescued countries that the problems that have made the common currency teeter were limited only to certain countries, whose public finances or financial sector have not been managed as rigorously as necessary, a fault which is foreign to their country.
Similar dynamics can be found in other spheres. There is no shortage of people who criticize lack of resolve in matters of foreign policy with third countries, faintness of border control on the part of those countries having external borders, or even question that the citizens of new member states share the same right to free movement as the other citizens of the Union.
The truth is however that these tensions derive more from the lack of integration within the European Union than from its actual existence. In other words, these problems are caused not by the Union, but by its shortcomings.
The historical conception of the European Union as a union of sovereign States means the national interests of each of these States often take on a preeminent role, slowing down and laying barriers to European integration. This has largely disrupted the efficient operation of the European Union and the adoption of fast and effective measures which redound to the benefit of all of its members, especially of its citizens.
The Institute for European Advancement is born against this backdrop as a form of Europe-wide think tank, whose aim is to suggest the next steps that need to be taken in different areas in order to progress with European integration. With the help of experts from different sectors and nationalities, we will formulate recommendations on how best to face the challenges affecting us all, improving the lives of European citizens and, most of all, ensuring that the dream of European construction comes to fruition.