In This Review

Braver, Greener, Fairer: Memos to the EU Leadership, 2019–2024
Braver, Greener, Fairer: Memos to the EU Leadership, 2019–2024
Edited by Maria Demertzis and Guntram B. Wolff
Bruegel, 2019, 269 pp
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Every five years, the European Union elects a new parliament, appoints a new commission, and replaces the president of the council and its high representative for foreign policy. Traditionally, this turnover is also a moment for EU officials to establish new priorities and a budgetary framework to pay for them. Just such a transition is occurring now. In this collection, analysts from Bruegel, one of Brussels’s most respected think tanks, review 11 issues and offer concrete policy recommendations for EU leaders. Each chapter constitutes a concise memo to the relevant officials. There are limitations: the chapters focus almost exclusively on industrial regulation, financial and digital services, competition policy, and other economic matters, areas in which Bruegel specializes; foreign policy, migration, Russian subversion, homeland security, and other important issues go neglected. The market-oriented recommendations are too numerous and idealistic, focusing on what would increase aggregate welfare rather than what is politically viable. The writing is jargon laden. Nonetheless, those who seek a succinct overview of the EU's potential course of action over the next five years are unlikely to find a better starting point.