Articles

Tweeting about Security and Defence: The Digital Influence of EU Member States during the 2017 NATO Summit

By Pierre H. N. Martin | 25 July 2017

EU member states all use Twitter for public diplomacy purposes, but they have disparate abilities to influence and rally support. When tweeting about security and defence, the most influential are mostly Western European countries and overwhelmingly in favour of more integration, whereas CEE countries are under–represented and the dissenters virtually inaudible. The 2017 NATO Summit serves as an illustration.

Sub-state public diplomacy: The Catalan case

By Balázs Gyimesi | 25 July 2017

Sub-state entities such as Scotland, Flanders or Catalonia entertain external relations, however, due to the different legal frameworks of the diplomatic activities of these regions, their channels and competences can vary greatly, making it difficult to compare them. The article examines the diplomatic activities of Catalonia, an autonomous community of Spain, focusing on its public diplomacy, its legal framework, channels and digital diplomatic activities on Twitter. As the findings show, Catalonia exercises an active public diplomacy through numerous channels, although the legal framework remains turbulent due to a conflictual relationship with Madrid. 

Where does Europe stand in the Chinese digital environment?

By Manon Bellon | 25 July 2017

Is the use of social media really a way for public institutions to reach a foreign population, engage in a two-way discussion and achieve one’s foreign policy goal? Or is it a lure of modernity that risks backfiring if not used well? With the largest Internet users’ community and the apparition of netizens, able to influence to some degree state policies, China is an interesting laboratory for EU digital diplomacy.

The discursive creation of #Visegrád

By Andreas Pacher | 25 July 2017

It is still alive, and even more so on Twitter: Despite having been frequently declared dead, the Visegrád Group has been enjoying considerable political attention in the past years. But what keeps it so alive? Recent theories claim that it is the discourse that makes a region politically relevant. This article looks at the discursive creation of the hashtags #Visegrád and #V4 on Twitter.

Ukraine’s ban of Russian websites: a matter of national security or a sign of rising authoritarianism?

By Inga Chelyadina | 25 July 2017

A decree by Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine, from 15th of May this year expanded the existing sanctions adopted over the annexation of Crimea and the support of separatists in eastern Ukraine. The new restrictions targeted the email service Mail.ru, Russian social networks Vkontakte and Odnoklassniki, and the search engine company Yandex. All four of them were among the top 10 of most popular sites in Ukraine according to the web traffic data company Alexa in May 2017.

Social media in government communications in Ukraine: expert opinions

By Yana Hryshko | 25 July 2017

Nowadays social media (SM) have penetrated every area of our life and it is hard to imagine a day without checking our social networks. It is not a surprise that they also influence governmental communication. As the first and the most important function of SM is communication, they became a powerful tool for governments to deliver their messages. However, this tool has its pros and cons and the influence of SM on government communications is not completely clear. The situation in Ukraine is even more interesting because SM in GR have started to become widely used only a few years ago. I asked three experts in government communications in Ukraine to shed light on the relevant situation in Ukraine with its challenges and opportunities.

Brexit and EU defence cooperation – seizing an opportunity?

By Armelle Ripart | 28 June 2017

After the British people demonstrated their will to leave the EU in a referendum in June 2016, many questions arose on the future of the EU. In particular, the security and defence of the Union, in which the United Kingdom has always played a crucial role, will become a highly important issue for the 27 remaining Member States.

Macedonia/FYROM: Changing Government, Changing Name?

By Andreas Pacher | 15 June 2017

The name dispute which has hampered Skopje’s path towards NATO and the EU receives fresh optimism. Both the new Macedonian government and the Greek Foreign Minister have signaled unusual goodwill for a soon-to-reach compromise. While some analysts assert that the ‘China factor’ may tone down Skopje’s thrust to the West, such a view is overly simplistic and should not pollute the hopes for a political reconciliation.

With Sebastian Kurz, Austria Further Heads Into Personalized Politics

By Anonyme | 27 May 2017

In a bold move that created a political list eponymously named after himself, the 30-year old Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz broke up Austria’s entrenched political order. He re-centered the conservative party – which had been in urgent need of reform – towards himself. This appraisal seeks to identify some factors of the continued success Kurz had been enjoying ever since he entered high governmental posts at the age of 24, but it also raises questions about how personalized politics further weakens the Austrian political parties.

Becoming Ukrainian. The context of national indifference in Ukraine

By Yana Hryshko | 24 April 2017

In the history of independent Ukraine, we can distinguish three periods of rising nationalism with rising national indifference in response. The topic has always been strongly influenced by the ‘Russia factor’. Moreover, the occurrence of national indifference was highly politicized, raising both nationalism and national indifference to the rank of a problem, issue, and even threat. In this article, I try to describe the origin of national indifference in Ukraine, the specificity of Ukrainian nationalism and the evolution of these two opposite yet intertwined phenomena.

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