For the second year running, the Aston Centre for Europe is organising a series of guest lectures on Europe’s relations with East Asia. The lectures are given by high-profile practitioners and leading scholars. The lecture series has been made possible by a European Commission grant (Lifelong Learning Programme, Education and Culture DG). The inspirational speakers provide unique insights into the challenges and opportunities presented by a fast changing and dynamic East Asian region.
Guest Name and LectureTitle
Time and Room
Jürgen Haacke (LSE)
The Myanmar of President U Thein Sein:Towards democracy, national reconciliation and international legitimacy
Julie Gilson (University of Birmingham)
Sino-Japanese Relations under the new Abe administration
Jean-MarcTrouille (Bradford University)
Reciprocity in Market Access– EU Trade Weapon against China? Or Instrument to Promote Market Access?
15:00– 17:00, MB404D
Thomas Roe (EU-Asia Centre)
Asia’s Century:Assessing the US and EU policies towards Asia
Nicholas Robinson (University of Leeds)
Pokemon vs. Callof Duty:Videogames, Popular Culture and East toWest Political Diffusion
The events are free and open to everyone. No booking is required.
took place on 31st January 2013 as part of the 'New EU Agenda' programme (in conjunction with the European Commission). It featured speakers from business, academia, think tanks and the European institutions.
Peter Kellner, the distinguished journalist, political commentator who is also President of YouGov, visited the University on 28 November as a guest of the Aston Centre for Europe (ACE). To an audience of around staff, students and visitors, Peter spoke fluently and engagingly on the state of British political parties in the run-up to the 2015 general election. In the lively discussion which followed, a wide range of issues were explored, including Europe, devolution and welfare politics. After the lecture, Peter took the opportunity to continue the discussion more informally with some of the students who attended.
Professor Simon Green, Co-Director of the Aston Centre for Europe said, ‘It was wonderful to welcome Peter as a speaker at Aston. Few commentators can combine an in-depth knowledge of British politics with detailed reference to opinion poll evidence in the way Peter can. It was truly a compelling and insightful event!’
This conference took place on Thursday, 7th June 2012 at the Lakeside Conference Centre. Some of the speakers include:
Daniel Franklin, Executive Editor of The Economist
Sir Michael Arthur, former UK Ambassador to India
Tom Roe from the EU's External Action Service
The European Commission Representation and Aston Centre for Europe co-organised a lunch-time seminar on Friday, 11th May 2012 at Europe House, Smith Square, London, SW1P 3EU.
Europe and the world have changed fundamentally since French voters elected a new President in 2007. Global financial and economic crisis has dominated world politics for the past five years. This in turn, has exposed weaknesses in the eurozone and prompted urgent thinking about the remedies to the sovereign-debt crisis. France has been at the heart of the European project since the early 1950s and will certainly play a decisive role in resolving the current malaise. The people of France chose their next President on 6th May 2012 that will have profound consequences for the rest of the EU.
The seminar bought together four analysts from academia and the private sector to discuss what the implications of the French Presidential elections are for Europe. Also being looked at will be the election results, what they mean politically and economically, as well as what they mean for business.
Sue Duncan, the first Chief Government Social Researcher and former Director of the Government Social Research Unit (GSRU) in the UK Cabinet Office and at present President of the UK Social Policy Association delivered a seminar on Wednesday, 8th February 2012 on Maximising Research Impact.
The discussion centred on what 'impact' in the social sciences really means and how (if at all) it can be usefully measured. Sue also looked at what kinds of research are most likely to generate impacts as well as strategies for working with policy-makers, drawing on her extensive experience of working at the heart of UK government.
Malcolm Harbour, MEP gave a lecture on 9th December 2011 on the 'European Parliament and how it works to staff & students.
David Marsh gave a excellent presentation on 'The Curse of the Euro' on Thursday, 17 Novemer 2011 at Aston University. The event was chaired by Professor William Paterson, OBE.
The event attracted about 170 people that consisted of external guests, students and staff.
To listen to David's presentation please click on the link below.
In 2010 the European Commission launched a new initiative to boost growth in the European Union. Known as the “Europe 2020” strategy, this approach puts innovation and green growth firmly at the heart of the Commission’s blueprint for driving forward European competitiveness. But how robust is the Europe 2020 framework? Are its aims achievable? Does it address fully the needs of European entrepreneurs and business leaders for a leaner, fitter policy framework that will support sustainable growth and jobs creation?
This conference brings together business leaders, academics, policy practitioners and local activists with a shared interest in developing a sound European policy framework for the delivery of the Europe 2020 strategy’s goals and objectives.
Download the programme
Audience and Target Groups:
A broad audience consisting of stakeholders from local and regional business community and voluntary organisations, regional and national government, together with opinion formers and decision-makers from the European institutions.
Attendance at the event is free of charge. For further details and to reserve a place, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Anneliese Dodds (LSS) and Josie Kelly (ABS) organised a one-day colloquium, hosted by the Aston Centre for Europe, on 'Public Administration: the future of the discipline' which took place on the 11th May. The colloquium was also supported by the Public Administration Committee of the Joint Universities Council, and the Public Administration sub-committee of the Political Studies Association. A variety of national and international academic and practitioner speakers attended the event, from as far afield as Aberdeen and even Australia!
The purpose of the colloquium was to consider the relevance of Public Administration research to the present zeitgeist. Despite the shrinking public sector in the UK and beyond, presenters made the case that Public Administration research continues to retain its relevance with its interest in modern complexities and the reach of contemporary Government policy.
Panelists considered a number of questions, including: Is public administration research still relevant to today’s policy context? Is the ‘public’ the problem with Public Administration, in a policy context where the size and scope of the state is being reduced? What can we learn from Public Administration research and education in other countries? How can, and should, the study of Public Administration relate to research and theory developed in related fields such as Politics and Public Management?
Speakers addressed the challenges facing the discipline of Public Administration. These included: increasing institutional fragmentation, lower availability of research funding, and lack of confidence amongst potential students in a subject perceived to be only concerned with the public sector. They also detailed the challenges for politicians in making and delivering public policy, such as the global financial crisis, demographic changes and the social and political implications of social change and risks.
Nonetheless, speakers offered an upbeat assessment for the subject as well as demonstrating the richness and variety of Public Administration research. British Public Administration research was described as well placed to absorb insights from across the social and even management sciences, as well as being open to innovations in theory and methodology from Europe and the US. Furthermore, many speakers argued that a Public Administration perspective was essential in order to better understand policy fields as diverse as policing, local government, healthcare, education, and even terrorism.
The lively debate at the colloquium, and range of ages, backgrounds and professional experiences of attendees, indicated the continuing importance of the subject of Public Administration, both to train and educate students about public policy-making and delivery, but also to better understand the activities of governments at all levels. Professor Simon Green, Co-Director of the Aston Centre for Europe, concluded: 'In light of the current austerity drive, which is unique in recent British history in its extent, this conference was, to say the very least, timely. Josie Kelly and Anneliese Dodds are to be warmly congratulated on the idea itself and on bringing together such a high-profile range of speakers.'
A talk by Shabana Mahmood, Labour Member of Parliament for Birmingham Ladywood took place on Friday 28th January at 2pm in room MB550.
She was first elected to Parliament (representing the constituency which includes Aston University) in 2010, having previously been a barrister. Shabana was born and raised in Birmingham, and was president of her college students’ union. She was one of the first Muslim women, and Asian women, MPs. Unusually for a new MP, Shabana was appointed Shadow Home Office Minister by Ed Miliband, Labour’s leader.
Shabana is also advertising two placements for Aston students, one in her Westminster Office and one in her constituency office. Students on placement next year should already have details. She has kindly agreed to extend the deadline for these until after her talk.
A high level seminar on the European policy of the Conservative–Liberal Democrat coalition. This conference was sponsored by the European Commission. Speakers at this event included Professor Tim Bale (Sussex), Professor Simon Bulmer (Sheffield), Professor Richard Whitman (Bath). The keynote speech was delivered by Dr Adam Posen of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee entitled, ‘Decoupling and Divergent Recoveries in Europe’.
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