News 2015

December 2015: Overview of EIF Events and lunchtime seminars

In 2015, the EIF continued its cooperation with other departments and institutes to establish a broader public discussion on EU related topics. In total, the Institute organised three large inter-disciplinary events on current issues like the European Integration in times of crisis, the protection of human rights, and the reforming of the EU's Economic and Monetary Union from a social investment perspective. Moreover, seven lunchtime seminars were conducted and two joint events with the Department of European, International and Comparative Law.


27-28 November 2015: Day of Political Science 2015

This year, the Austrian Political Science Association (ÖGPW) organised the “Day of Political Science” (Tag der Politikwissenschaft) in cooperation with the University of Salzburg. Two EIF members contributed to this conference. In a panel on social Europe, Veronika Pollak along with Stefanie Rieder set out a paper on the access to social benefits. Brigitte Pircher, who was also member of the Conference’s steering committee (Programmkomitee), presented her paper on the transposition of EU Directives in Austria.


November 2015: Visiting Scholar at EIF

The EIF hosted an associate professor from Ukraine. Oksana Krayevska from the Faculty of International Relations at the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv visited the Institute to further pursue her research on the relations between the EU and Ukraine. In an EIF lunchtime seminar she presented possible perspectives of an EU-Ukraine cooperation and gave insights into her current research topic.


31 October 2015: Panel discussion on asylum and migration

In a panel discussion organised by the Austrian Academy of Sciences, the EIF’s director Gerda Falkner debated on a high-ranking podium the current challenges regarding refugee reception and management in Europe. She presented the reasons why the EU was not yet able to achieve common standards in asylum policy and explained that diverging interests of the member states have led to a situation of “joint-decision trap”.

Media coverage of the event:

APA- Science

Salzburger Nachrichten


23. September 2015: EIF Direktorin im ZIB Magazin

Nachdem die EU-Innenminister vom Prinzip der Einstimmigkeit abgewichen sind, wurde eine Entscheidung zur Verteilung von Flüchtlingen möglich. Gerda Falkner erklärt im ZIB-Magazin vom 23.9., dass dieser Schritt für ein Weiterkommen in der Asylfrage wohl unvermeidlich war.


4 September 2015: EIF's director at APSA

Gerda Falkner presented at the American Political Science Association's Annual Conference in San Francisco her paper on "European Integraton in a Time of Crisis".


August/September 2015: Florian Trauner on TV

Several TV channels have interviewed Florian Trauner concerning the current situation of refugees in Europe and how politics could respond adequately to these challenges. One of his suggestions is that the EU’s member states should react jointly and not in opposition to one other.

  1. On ZIB-Magazin on 1.9. the question why Germany is a favoured destination for refugees was discussed with Florian Trauner.
  2. 2. On 26.8. Florian Trauner explained on Puls 4 News the importance of open borders in Europe.
  3. 3. In an interview for Servus TV Journal on 25.8. his assessment of the European refugee policy was paramount.
  4. 4. On 25.8. Florian Trauner provided his expertise for ZIB 2 on current challenges in Europe and possible solutions.


July 2015: EIF’s Director on TV

EIF Director Gerda Falkner appeared in several media appearances during the last month. Considered was the future of Greece and its perspectives both in and out of the Eurozone.

  1. Gerda Falkner discussed the consequences of the special summit of EU heads of state and government live on the ORF broadcast „Im Zentrum Spezial“ on 12 July 2015.
  2. The possible effects of the Greek referendum on the future of European integration were the subject of the ZIB Magazin on ORF 1 on Monday 6 July 2015.
  3. On 5 July 2015 Falkner was on ORF 2 (Hohes Haus) television debating the Austrian Lower Chamber's reforms regarding speaking rights for elected EP members from Austria ("Europas Stimmen im Bundesrat").
Here are the links and summaries of EIF TV presence during these dates: http://eif.univie.ac.at/media/index.php


8 - 10 July 2015: CES Conference in Paris

The Council for European Studies (CES) and Sciences Po organised the 22nd International Conference of Europeanist “Contradictions: Envisioning European Futures” on current research issues in Paris. The EIF Director and four staff members (Florian Trauner, Zdenek Kudrna, Inga Ulnicane-Ozolina and Brigitte Pircher) contributed to the conference. Besides individual paper presentations in the area of EU migration policy, research policy and EU implementation, a panel on the EU’s crisis and its effects on decision-making and policies, chaired by Gerda Falkner, discussed the very latest topics in this field with Brigid Laffan and Fritz Scharpf.


June 2015: EPSA Conference in Vienna and EIF lunchtime seminars

This year the Annual General Conference of the European Political Science Association (EPSA) took place in the famous Baroque residence Schloss Schönbrunn in Vienna. The EIF’s Director presented a paper on the latest topic of the EU's Crisis and its effects on internal and external policies. Furthermore, Veronika Pollak and Brigitte Pircher both presented papers on Austrian politics and the EU.

In June, the EIF organised numerous lunchtime seminars dealing with different topics. Issues such as the reintroduction of border controls, the European Citizens‘ Initiative, and accounting for the possibility of exiting the EU's decision trap via global institutions were discussed with colleagues from the University.


May 2015: Event on visibility strategies in the Humanities, Social Sciences, and Cultural Studies

In May the Vice Rector for Research and Career Development and the Working Group for Scientometrics of the University of Vienna organised an event „Möglichkeiten der Sichtbarkeitssteigerung in den Geistes-, Sozial- und Kulturwissenschaften” (Possibilities for Visibility Strategies in the Humanities, Social Sciences, and Cultural Studies). The EIF participated in the conference, which brought about interesting findings. https://bibliometrie.univie.ac.at/informationsveranstaltung-ssh/?no_cache=


April 2015: EU’s refugee policy

How can refugee tragedies in the Mediterranean Sea be prevented? What measures must be set by the EU to meet the challenges in refugee policy effectively? Florian Trauner discusses these questions in his policy brief and in a commentary in the Wiener Zeitung. http://eif.univie.ac.at/media/index.php


March 2015: Three new working papers

The EIF has published three new working papers within the EIF working papers series until March 2015. “Austria: stable society and crisis-exposed banks” by Zdenek Kudrna is a draft version of the Chapter 12 of the forthcoming edited volume on the EU and its member states edited by Eleanor Zeff and Ellen Pirro, which is to be published by Lynne Rienner Publishers in the US.

The working paper by Jun Saito “Österreich und die EU-Erweiterung am westlichen Balkan: Nationale Präferenzbildung und EU-Verhandlungsstrategien“ analyses Austria’s contribution to the integration of the Western Balkans into the European Union by combining liberal intergovernmentalism with theories on how small states conduct foreign policy.

The paper “Die Wiederaufnahme von Grenzkontrollen - Schengen als Opfer für "die nationale Sicherheit"?” presents the master’s thesis by Stefanie Rieder where she investigated whether the legal conditions for reintroducing internal border controls within the safety clause have been restricted or extended through the Schengen-Reform by the end of 2013.


January 2015: Public events and workshops

Throughout 2014, the EIF continued its cooperation with other faculties and departments to establish a broader public discussion and to bring various institutions together to discuss EU-related issues. Therefore, the Institute organized 7 public events or interdepartmental workshops on various issues, such as the EU Banking Union, the EU as a global player, EU Enlargement – 10 years after, the Future of the Euro, EU competition law, European integration in research and new intergovernmentalism. Prominent guests like Ulrich Sedelmeier, Fritz W. Scharpf, Henrik Enderlein, Helen Wallace and Uwe Puetter, as well as colleagues from the University of Vienna, contributed to the workshops.

In January 2015, the Institute started its public events for the year with a panel discussion on the “EU in crisis: Effects in different policy areas”, where the first findings of a major collaborative project were presented and discussed with Brigid Laffan, Michèle Knodt and colleagues from the University of Vienna.