The global health crisis is accelerating the trend towards de-globalization that started with the Great Recession of 2008-9 and, at the same time, the balance of powers is slowly and inexorably moving to the East, thus leaving Europe on the sidelines of the international scenario. In light of this, the Old Continent will have to find new strategies to maintain and regenerate its influence as well as to redefine its own identity.
Ivan Krastev, international expert in political science, offered a brilliant reflection on the topic with the essay « Is It Tomorrow, Yet? Paradoxes of the Pandemic » (Penguin Books, 2020). Trying to make sense of the Covid-19 tragedy, Mr. Krastev has intervened often times in the public discourse by highlighting the long-term legacy of the pandemic that, in his view, has changed international politics as we know it.
Will the EU and its institutions live up to the expectations? Are we doomed to witness the end of the Atlantic era? What long-term strategy should Europe adopt vis-à-vis the growing hostility between US and China?
These and similar questions were addressed during the meeting.
Ivan Krastev is a political scientist and chairman of the Center for Liberal Strategies in Sofia, Bulgaria as well as a permanent fellow at the Institute of Human Sciences in Vienna, Austria.
He is a founding member of the European Council on Foreign Relations and is widely regarded as an expert on Balkan and European affairs. Mr. Krastev is also a member of the board of trustees of the International Crisis Group and was Richard von Weizsäcker fellow at the Robert Bosch Stiftung in Berlin from 2013-2017.
Mr. Krastev has also held fellowships at several academic institutions, including St. Anthony’s College, the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Institute of Federalism at the University of Fribourg, and the Remarque Institute at New York University.
In addition to being a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, Mr. Krastev is the author of numerous books including After Europe published in 2017 and Is It Tomorrow, Yet? How the Pandemic Changes Europe? published in 2020.