The highlight of transform!’s prioriry programme on the crisis in Europe was the launch of the “transform! Economists Working Group” (TEWG). So far 43 economists of 14 European countries have agreed to join the new network coordinated by Elena Papadopoulou, Elisabeth Gauthier and Maxime Benatouil.
Its first activity gathered 22 participants of 8 European countries in Paris (11-12 April 2013) on the occasion of a workshop dedicated to the state of the European crisis, the left alternatives to the current crisis management, as well as to the analysis of the “competitiveness shock” and what’s behind it. A full report, in English and in French, is available on the transform! website (see section “Crisis in Europe – Crisis of Europe”). It lists the outcome of the discussion, political recommendations, and working perspectives to be developed further. A PowerPoint presentation introducing the causes and an overview of the crisis is also available.
A well-balanced representation of academics from across Europe enabled the TEWG to tackle the issue of the growing differentiation between the so-called “core Europe” and “Periphery”, and the needed proposals towards the formation of efficient coalitions for changing Europe.
The definition of the TEWG focuses was the result of the workshop’s fruitful deliberations. In the future, the group will tackle the issue of the productive reconstruction in the Southern EU countries and the debates on the Eurozone that shake up left parties across Europe. Bearing in mind the forthcoming European elections, we are collecting the most important points regarding the mentioned issues to put them at activists’ and curious citizens’ disposal. Relevant documentation is already to be found on our website (see section Programme “Euro in Debate – Future of the Euro”).
In the course of the year the TEWG was represented in several events, such as the presentations of the EuroMemorandum 2013 in Paris at the European Parliament and the conference organized by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation (Berlin, 30 May) where the study of Flassbeck & Lapavitsas was discussed.
Regarding the prospects for the second half of the year, the TEWG will be present at the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy (EAEPE) annual conference. Scheduled for November 2013, the conference will focus on the state and future of industries in Europe. This event will give us the opportunity to gain in visibility, to establish contacts, and to follow the latest arguments on this matter of crucial importance for the recovery of the EU. The TEWG will be in charge of two panels on productive reconstruction in southern Europe and EU industrial policies to tackling the crisis and the ecological transition.