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The European Commission in Brussels/Belgium.

Democracy in Europe, role of civil society, corporate social responsability

You may dislike the fact that the European Union (EU) is a huge bureaucracy. But you cannot ignore that it is a result-oriented one. 

I cannot feel but admiration for the EU system. Thousands of EU officials and lobbyists often debate for years about a draft legislation and produce tons of papers in hundreds of meetings, workshops and conferences. But at some point the representatives of 28 European nations agree on laws that very often have a positive global impact, especially in the environmental and consumer protection fields. The EU is not perfect. But its officials debate, argue and then agree on a compromise without a single shot being fired. For me the EU is still an amazing peace project.

In addition, the EU funds and promotes pro-democracy projects and the rule of law all over the world, like the US. You cannot say this is the case with the other super powers Russia and China.   

Here are speeches, articles and position papers I wrote about more transparency in the EU decision-making process, about the role of civic society in Western democracies, about corporate social reponsibility and other related issues.

Lobbying the EU - and rocking the boat
Paper (in ENGLISH) on how green groups combine lobby work and public pressure to achieve maximum results in the capital of the European Union, Brussels. Conference "Participative democracy beyond borders?" Brussels, November 2006

Lobbying for sustainability
How non-governmental organisations (NGOs) lobby in the capital of the European Union, Brussels, and challenges facing the oil, car and energy industries (in ENGLISH). Speech at the Issue Management conference, Wiesbaden/Germany, September 2007

Give us real Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) - and not hollow PR
Paper presented at the conference "CSR - Innovation and competitiveness", organised by the EU Finish presidency. Brussels, November 2006
Responsabilities of international corporates
Paper (in GERMAN) dealing with the responsabilities of multinational corporations - with a focus on E.ON, Shell, DaimlerChrysler and the Umbrella Organization of German Industry, BDI. Presented at the Issue Management conference in Berlin, April 2004
Democracy in Russia, European energy security and climate change
Opinion editorial in the European Voice (in ENGLISH) with Andre Wilkens. Brussels, January 2007
Balance of power in the EU
Interview and article about the balance of power between non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in the capital of the European Union, Brussels, and corporates (in ENGLISH). Issue Barometer, October 2007
The EU and civil society in China
Why the European Union should support an independent civil society in China. Paper (in ENGLISH) presented during the conference "EU-China: defining a new relationship". Organised by the think tank Friends of Europe in Brussels, October 2006
Civil society in Western democracies
Paper (in ENGLISH) analysing the role of an independent and vibrant civil society in Western democracies. Public debate organised by the think tank European Policy Center in Brussels, November 2006
Relations between corporates and NGOs
Interview (in ENGLISH) about the normally troubled relations between corporates and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Issue Barometer, June 2002
Civic activism in democracies (in GERMAN)
Speech about Greenpeace campaigning, civic disobedience and activism. Organised by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Cologne/Germany. September 2000 
Civic activism in democracies (in ENGLISH)
Civil disobedience as a protest form against environmental offenders and public response to it. Paper presented at Keele University, UK, October 1993
Attention dialogue trap!
Paper about traps corporates lay to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) when offering a dialogue (in GERMAN). Presented at the Issue Management conference in Berlin/Germany, June 2002
Fair lobby work in the EU capital
Article (in GERMAN) about the challenges facing non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in the capital of the European Union, Brussels, when lobbying and communicating. Magazine "Kommunikations-Manager", March 2007