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What are the EU prospects on global multilateral governance after the coronavirus pandemic?

On Tuesday, 13th of October 2020 PubAffairs Bruxelles was delighted to hold an open and interactive discussion on the EU prospects regarding multilateral governance after the coronavirus pandemic with our distinguished speakers Mr Fabio Massimo Castaldo MEP, Vice-President of the European Parliament, Ms Maria Soraya Rodriguez-Ramos MEP, Chair of the Delegation for relations with the Pan-African Parliament and AFET Committee Member, Professor Andrea Renda, Head of Global Governance, Regulation, Innovation and the Digital Economy (GRID), CEPS, Mr Andy Purdy, Chief Security Officer, Huawei USA and Mr Henry Llewellyn, Ad interim Chair, Brussels New Generation of young leaders.

The event will be hosted by Jennifer Baker, senior journalist on tech policy and digital rights

Introductory remarks


Mr Fabio Massimo Castaldo MEP, Vice-President of the European Parliament 

Video contribution

Mr Julian Jacobitz, Brussels New Generation (BNG) of young leaders

EVENT DISCUSSION hosted by Jennifer Baker

This event was kindly sponsored by

About the debate

As highlighted in the international public debate that followed the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, the coronavirus pandemic has shaken Europe and the world to its core, testing healthcare and welfare systems, economies, societies and way of living and working together across countries. To respond to the crisis, Europe has come together and put forward the Next Generation EU” not only to deal with the dire impacts of the heath emergency, but also to prepare the ground to a more sustainable and prosperous future and build the next generation of European leaders that tomorrow needs. Every generation has been defined by some historical events that have spread uncertainty or fear. However, these types of events have also given room for a change in the way citizens from all over the globe perceived the world they are living in and the way in which they made individual and collective decisions. Several authoritative commentators therefore stated that now is a defining moment in history as regards international diplomatic and economic relations, as well as the future of a fully connected, intelligent world.

Both Europe and the whole world are simultaneously confronting a global health crisis and the profound changes from the advancement of digital technologies and climate change. For example, China’s economic stimulus and the New Infrastructure initiative, as Europe’s Next Generation EU, call for spending heavily on projects towards the recovery and the strengthening of the economy for the digital and environmental-friendly age. At a wider global level, the UN Sustainable Development Goals aim at putting people first by helping developing countries in achieving higher standards, enhance action for better education for all, create a sense of community and a shared vision of the future, while countering the idea of “clash of civilizations”. Can countries and blocs all over the world chose separate paths without creating barriers for international relations, cooperation, and global governance that fail to meet the needs of global citizens?

The State of the Union speech of President von der Leyen has laid the foundation stone for Europe to make its own choices, based on its own values, respecting its own rules by showing what is possible to achieve when trust is fostered and cooperation is a crucial element to reach common goals. An increasing need has emerged at both a European and global level to enhance trust and cooperation in diplomatic relations, as well as to define common goods and objectives to shape a better way of living for the world of tomorrow. As regards EU-China relations, the interests in common on issues such as climate change are conveying nations to honor the Paris Agreement, lead by example, and adhere to the rule of law. How can multilateral governance best function in response to external crises, capacity building of partners, and protection of the Union and its citizens?

About the speakers

Maria Soraya Rodríguez Ramos
Soraya Rodriguez Ramos is a Member of the European Parliament from Spain and Renew Europe Group. She also served as an MEP under the 5th parliamentary term between 1999 and 2004. Under the current term, she chairs the Delegation for relations with the Pan-African Parliament and is member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, and of the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality. Mrs Rodríguez is Renew Europe’s Coordinator at the Subcommittee of Human Rights. Prior to her current term in the European Parliament, between 2016-2019 Ms Rodríguez was a Member of the Spanish Congress. Mrs Rodríguez was state secretary for international cooperation and development in the Spanish government (2008-2011). She is a lawyer by education and worked to defend the rights of women.

Andrea Renda

​​​​​​​Andrea Renda is a Senior Research Fellow and Head of the CEPS Unit on Global Governance, Regulation, Innovation and the Digital Economy (GRID). He is Part-Time Professor of Digital Policy at the School of Transnational Governance of the European University Institute, in Florence (Italy). He is a non-resident Senior Fellow at Duke University’s Kenan Institute for Ethics and was Adjunct Professor of Law and Economics at Duke Law School (United States) for Academic Year 2016/2017. He is also Visiting Professor of Competition Policy and the Digital Economy at the College of Europe in Bruges (Belgium), where he held the “Google Chair” for Digital Innovation from September 2017 to August 2020. Andrea is a Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Science, and a CITI Fellow at Columbia University’s Centre for Tele-Information. A very prolific author and keynote speaker, Andrea provides regular advice to several institutions, including the European Commission, the European Parliament, the OECD, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and many more. He was a member of the EU High Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence and is a member of the advisory group on Economic and Societal Impacts of Research (ESIR), for the European Commission, DG Research and Innovation.

Andy Purdy

Andy Purdy joined Huawei Technologies USA as Chief Security Officer in July 2012. Andy oversees Huawei USA’s cyber security assurance strategy and program and supports Huawei’s global security program. Andy was a member of the White House staff team that helped to draft the U.S. National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace (2003), and later went to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to help form and launch the National Cyber Security Division (NCSD) where he served as the lead cyber security official for the U.S. government from 2004-2006.  Before joining the White House staff, Andy served as Acting General Counsel and, before that, Chief Deputy General Counsel, at the U.S. Sentencing Commission. Earlier in his career he served as a federal prosecutor in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Senior Staff Counsel of the House Select Committee on Assassinations (President John Kennedy), Special Counsel to the U.S. House Ethics Committee, and Counsel to the U.S. Senate Impeachment Trial Committee.

Henry Llewellyn
Henry Llewellyn is an associate at Slaughter and May, specialising in European and UK competition law and has been resident in the Brussels office since 2015. Henry has advised clients including Elanco, Equinix, FMC, Google, JP Morgan, Tata Steel and Vodafone on matters ranging from merger control, cartel investigations and abuse of dominance. Henry is also the current Chair (Ad Interim) of Brussels New Generation (BNG), which is the young professionals network of the British Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and aims to be the leading network for young international professionals in Brussels.

About the moderator

Jennifer Baker
Jennifer Baker has been a journalist in print, radio and television for nearly 20 years, specialising in EU policy and legislation particularly in the technology sector. She has worked across a wide range of media, from editing a national daily paper in Malta, to reporting on European affairs for Middle Eastern television and has a wealth of experience in navigating the political quagmire of the EU. She is passionate about the importance of rigorous journalism to society and believes ethical journalism should go hand in hand with conviction on human rights issues. She regularly features as an EU policy expert on BBC radio.