Europe in the World

Partnership with the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency

The European Union as crisis manager – patterns and prospects

21 November 2013

The European Union (EU) is increasingly engaged in managing crises inside and outside Europe. Over the past two years, the EU has stepped up its capacities and is reorganising its toolbox to enable it to respond to escalating and complex crises. A new role for the EU as crisis manager involves a dynamic process of reorganising response mechanisms across the various institutions. This process was, in part, kick-started by the Lisbon Treaty, which calls for joined-up crisis management abroad and transboundary response mechanisms at home.

This Policy Dialogue, organised in cooperation with the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB), discussed EU capacities across policy sectors, institutions and agencies, and the new forms of cooperation evolving among the EU28 to respond to humanitarian and human-induced disasters around the world. Conflicts simmering at the EU’s borders – Mali, Libya and Syria – and super typhoon Haiyan that destroyed large swathes of fragile archipelago in the Philippines and killed more than 5,200 people provided a sobering backdrop for reflection.

Speakers included: Kristalina Georgieva, European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response; Agostino Miozzo, Managing Director for Crisis Response and Operational Cooperation at the European External Action Service; Helena Lindberg, Director-General of the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency; Florika Fink-Hooijer, Director for Strategy, Policy and International Cooperation in DG Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, European Commission; and Erik Windmar, Member of the Cabinet of European Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmström.

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