Making policies work

Theme 1: Reconciling values and interests in the external action of the European Union

All actors in international cooperation have interests and many enshrine values and philosophies in their international obligations and institutions.

Europe in particular has major assets with which to assume a leadership role in international cooperation, in particular, owing to the ‘values’ it seeks to promote (e.g. human rights, democracy, social cohesion).

The European External Action Service (EEAS), the EU’s new diplomatic service created by the Treaty of Lisbon, aims at an integrated and coherent external policy for Europe to be a global leader. For all its strengths in international cooperation, Europe still needs to find ways to speak with one voice and follow through on commitments to partner countries.

How can the EU reconcile its work in a more systematic way on topics at the nexus of security and development, conflict prevention, fragile states and resilience?

This ‘European’ agenda is of major importance for partner countries. In this role as ‘broker’, ECDPM seeks to provide critical information on what happens in EU external action to public and private actors in the countries of ACP so that they can make their voices heard and defend their interests.

Some of the topics we cover in this theme are: ‘Beyond’ Aid , Policy Coherence for Development, Millennium Development Goals, Conflict and Fragility, Trade Reform, Regional Integration, and Democratisation.

To see how our five Programmes support our Strategy, please have a look at the Programme pages:


Strengthening European External Action

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Conflict, Security and Resilience

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Economic Transformation and Trade

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Africa’s Change Dynamics

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Food Security

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