Enhancing EU Enlargement

Denis Preshova focuses on the role of judicial councils as one of the main features […]

Policy Study


Denis Preshova focuses on the role of judicial councils as one of the main features of European Commission’s approach towards judicial reforms. The paper is divided into three sections that will try to put forward the arguments noting the shortcomings of judicial reforms as promoted by the EU as well as make suggestions for improvements of the EU’s approach towards judicial reforms. The first part will discuss the general approach that the EU has taken in its enlargement policy, particularly seen through the already finished accession process of CEE countries, and what kind of implications such reforms have had and whether there have been lessons to be learned. The second part will focus specifically on an issue very telling for judicial reforms in Western Balkans and that is concerned with the institutional reforms and the introduction of judicial council as part of the judicial autonomy and self-governing and the weaknesses of this approach. The third part will try to draw out suggestions and recommendations that could be taken into consideration by the PES. These suggestions should also help the European Commission improve its approach to judicial reforms and point out the way in which the EU can increase its results in this area.


Ben Taylor focuses on the progressive left in Turkey in the context of EU accession, and offer some suggestions for strengthening the relationship of the PES with the Turkish Left on a broader front than is currently being pursued. Although the current situation in Turkey is changing rapidly, there are still some relatively clear aspects with regards to progressive left politics and EU accession. The first is that while the CHP may appear to be the most pragmatic choice of partners in the short term, especially given recent turmoil across Turkey, its foundations and history upon which it still places considerable emphasis, predicate against an easy alignment with social democratic values. This paper begins with an overview of the CHP’s formation and development as a party over the past century, with particular focus on its changing views on social democracy and Europe and will finish by assessing whether there are realistic possibilities in working with other progressive parties, and whether there is a way of working with grassroots and union organisations.

Find attached both papers: 

Denis PRESHOVA: Searching for the right approach. EU enlargement and judicial reforms in the Western Balkans

Ben TAYLOR: Left out of Europe. How can the PES reinvigorate its relationship with the Turkish Left?


Background on the FEPS Young Academics Network

The Young Academics Network (YAN) was established in March 2009 by the Foundation of European Progressive Studies (FEPS) with the support of the Renner Institut to gather progressive PhD candidates and young PhD researchers, who are ready to use their academic experience in a debate about the Next Europe. The founding group was composed of awardees of the “Call for Paper” entitled “Next Europe, Next Left” – whose articles also help initiating the FEPS Scientific Magazine “Queries”. Quickly after, with the help of the FEPS member foundations, the group enlarged – presently incorporating around 30 outstanding and promising young academics.

FEPS YAN meets in the Viennese premises of Renner Institut, which offers great facilities for both reflections on the content and also on the process of building the network as such. Both elements constitute mutually enhancing factors, which due to innovative methods applied make this Network also a very unique project. Additionally, the groups work has been supervised by the Chair of the Next Left Research Programme, Dr. Alfred Gusenbauer – who at multiple occasions joined the sessions of the FEPS YAN, offering his feedback and guidance.

This paper is one of the results of the third cycle of FEPS YAN, (the first one ended with three papers in June 2011, while the second one led to five papers in spring 2013), in which six key themes were identified and were researched by FEPS YAN working groups. These topics encompass:Precarious employment in Europe; “Full employment: A progressive vision for Europe; “Get the party started: Modernizing progressive politics; “The 2014 European elections; “Enhancing EU enlargement” and “Young and easily allured? A comparative analysis on the relationship between populism and youth in Europe. Each of the meetings is an opportunity for the FEPS YAN to discuss the current state of their research, presenting their findings and questions both in the plenary, as also in the respective working groups. The added value of their work is the pan-European, innovative, interdisciplinary character – not to mention, that it is by principle that FEPS wishes to offer a prominent place to this generation of academics, seeing in it a potential to construct alternative that can attract young people to progressivism again. Though the process is very advanced already, the FEPS YAN remains a Network – and hence is ready to welcome new participants.

FEPS YAN plays also an important role within FEPS structure as a whole. The FEPS YAN members are asked to join different events (from large Conferences, such as FEPS “Call to Europe” or “Renaissance for Europe” and PES Convention to smaller High Level Seminars and Focus Group Meetings) and encouraged to provide inputs for publications (i.e. for FEPS Scientific Magazine “Queries”). Enhanced participation of the FEPS YAN Members in the overall FEPS life and increase of its visibility remains one of the strategic goals of the Network for 2014.

For more information please contact the FEPS colleagues in charge of the FEPS YAN’s coordination: Ania Skrzypek, FEPS Senior Research Fellow at ania.skrzypek@feps-europe.eu, or Judit Tanczos, FEPS Policy Advisor at judit.tanczos@feps-europe.eu.

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