Central Europe

The German grand coalition : governing without opposition?

By Isabel Winnwa | 3 January 2014

After two months of negotiations, the German election has finally led to the Grand coalition desired by some and feared by others. Chancellor Merkel commands a majority of 504 out of 631 members of the Bundestag, the remaining 127, composed of Die Grünen and Die Linke, form the opposition of 20% of the votes. Merkel autarchy and opposition pro forma, is this democratic? Hardly. 

In the Land of Schnitzel, Coffee and Newspaper Bags

By Katharina Moser | 4 December 2013

Postcard-pictures of crispy brown Schnitzels and majestically dressed empress “Sissi” have circled the globe so many times that they have become the first images popping up in everyone’s mind when thinking of Austria. But what do you find when you dig a bit deeper, from the well known clichés to the real ‘typical’ traits of Austria? 130 young Europeans have given their answers. 

The Merkel Paradox

By Jérémie Gagné | 4 December 2013

On 22 September 2013, the German federal election was held in the very eye of a European storm. While people throughout the Eurozone were debating whether or not the visibly dramatic effects of fiscal austerity policy in Southern countries would eventually be outweighed by the long-term benefits of structural adjustment, indifferent Germans enjoyed the warm breeze of relative economic well-being on their way to the polls.

Sexual rights between “Polandisation” and Europeanisation

By Annamária Tóth | 18 October 2012

There is a Hungarian saying that the Hungarians and the Poles are good friends and will stay together for better or for worse. This saying seems to be reconfirmed in some of today's socio-political debates. As far as abortion and other sexual, reproductive and health rights (SRHR) are concerned, “Hungary is polandising,” Judith Wirth, Policy Officer at NaNe Women's Association from Budapest, argued at the conference “Women, Gender and Feminism(s) in the V4 Countries”.

Women in Central European Economies: Challenges and Perspectives

By Aurore Guieu (V4SciencesPo) | 15 October 2012

Women in Central Europe experienced the bloom of democracy and liberalized economies since they got rid of communist regimes. These transitions gave birth to many expectations, as did the 2004 EU accession. But what is the actual position of women in economies and particularly in labour markets? What are their challenges and future perspectives?

Austrian Politics: ‘Far-Right’ or ‘New Style’?

By Florian Karasek | 28 November 2017

Some analysts wrongfully depict the Austrian electoral experience from October 2017 as a drift to the (far-)right, fearing that a populist, anti-immigrant anxiety may become embedded into the Austrian government. But the fact that the would-be-chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s stances have at times aligned with the populist Freedom Party (FPÖ) does not mean that his success is based on substantial ‘far-right’ politics. It is rather a new political style, not its content, which led him to victory.

Hungary: the Black Sheep of the EU?

By Annamária Tóth | 3 February 2012

In our series of articles about Hungary, Nouvelle Europe concludes with the perspectives of two Hungarian students on the new Constitution, Hungary in the EU, and alternatives to the current government. 

Poland and the Common Security and Defence Policy

By Tita Aver | 17 August 2011

July 2011 marked the beginning of the Polish presidency of the European Union. Strenghtening the CSDP is one of the targets put forward. However, already during its accession process to the EU, Poland has been keen on getting involved in the transformation of the European Security and Defence Policy and has continued to do so since it became a member. Nonetheless, one must not forget the weight NATO and the USA have in the Polish Army.

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