EP2019: how do MEPs feel towards EU trade policy post-elections?

The EU has achieved a strong position in global trade acting together as a single voice (through the European Commission), rather than with 28 separate trade negotiations. Among other policy priorities, trade agreements have been one of the major achievements by Juncker’s Commission. However, different political forces assess the performance of the current Commission very differently from each other and, with the European elections around the corner, we wondered how the EU’s trade agenda might look with a very different texture of the future European Parliament. Continue Reading

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VoteWatch Europe is the leading organisation that tracks and forecasts EU political developments, through a unique combination of big political data and expert insights.

Our work is built on two pillars:

1) we follow the dynamics in the EU institutions (majority building, winners and losers, cohesion of the groups) to identify the supporters, opponents and the kingmakers among the EU Parliamentarians on any given policy proposal or broader area;

2) we follow the socio-political trends across the continent (opinion polls, governments’ change) in order to forecast the changes in the balance of power in both the European Parliament and the Council,  and hence the agenda and the margin of maneuver of the European Commission, on any given policy proposal. Continue Reading

EP2019: how MEPs have made decisions during these 5 years?

Three months from now, many MEPs will try to keep their job by asking the EU citizens to give them another chance to move the EU forward. VoteWatch Europe will provide the public with a series of reports that reveal what and how the MEPs decided in these five years on behalf of half-a-billion citizens.  Today, we look at the big numbers.

Throughout these five years of the legislature, the European Parliament has hosted around 9,000 roll-call votes – these include separate votes on key paragraphs and amendments and are the “transparent votes”, in which the public can see which way each Member of the Parliament voted. Continue Reading

Book: “Lobbying in the EU” after Brexit, the views of a seasoned observer

Having set up and run for the past 10 years a leading Brussels-based observatory of EU politics, Doru Frantescu, CEO and Co-founder of VoteWatch Europe, shares his insights in this Springer’s book, Lobbying in the European Union. The volume is coordinated by  Doris Dialer and Margarethe Richter and combines insights from a broad range of practitioners and academia. Continue Reading

EU elections countdown: state of candidates, manifestos, projections

As the EU elections are getting closer, VoteWatch Europe is receiving a huge number of questions from stakeholders and citizenry who are either concerned about possible turns in EU’s policies, or simply want to be ahead of the game with their advocacy campaigns. Here is the kind of questions that we receive on a daily basis and that we work to answer:

– Which MEPs will remain without a job and which will be reelected? Continue Reading

Which EP political groups are actually fake?

Friends of Europe [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

The next European Parliament will be a more fragmented one, as big groups will dwindle and smaller groups will grow. The EPP+S&D coalition, for example, is likely to fail short of 50% of the seats, for the first time since we hold EU elections.

This will make it much harder to make coalitions, which can explain the moves of some MEPs to try to prevent over-fragmentation by imposing stricter rules on the creation of political groups. Continue Reading

EP2019 projections: 5-Star’s new group, what impact?

As anti-establishment parties attempt to challenge the European Union status-quo, Five Star Movement announced its plans of forming a new group in the European Parliament. This further reinforces projections of an increasingly fragmented EP, but in a different way: whilst fringe groups have been growing and trying to expand their outreach, this new group would in fact fragment the  anti-establishment camp. Continue Reading

EP 2019: increasingly fragmented Parliament (fresh projections)

The year of this unprecedented electoral event has started. Five months from now, European citizens will vote for the first time without the British. Euro-critical / eurosceptical forces are trying to organise so that they can challenge the status-quo: today, Salvini meets Kaczynski. What can happen in May’s elections?

Here are some of our latest projections:

– If current trends are confirmed, for the first time in history of the elected EP, the two largest groups (EPP + S&D) would not be able to command a majority of seats. Continue Reading

VoteWatch CEO among the most influential players in Brussels

Doru Peter Frantescu, CEO and co-Founder of VoteWatch Europe, was mentioned  by a recent Politico report as one of the most influential players in the context of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU. Since the first ever Romanian Presidency, which began on January 1st, is expected to cope with a big number of challenges for the EU: Brexit, the approaching European elections and the approval of the next multiannual financial framework, the practitioners mentioned in the report are expected to have a word to say in the “changing and treacherous political and diplomatic landscape” over the next 6 months.  Continue Reading

5 takeaways from our special event with Prof. Simon Hix

Our latest event on the future of Europe post-2019 featured a brilliant intervention by Prof. Simon Hix (Professor of Political Science at the London School of Economics and Co-Founder of VoteWatch Europe), who provided valuable insights on what might happen next year. Additionally, Doru Frantescu (Director and Co-Founder of VoteWatch Europe) provided key updates on the policy forecasts that VoteWatch Europe is carrying out in the run-up to the European elections.  Continue Reading

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