Global EU

EU external action and diplomacy, and relations with third countries and regions

Leveraging wide-ranging expertise on EU foreign policy and public administration, EIPA provides tailor-made training to EU institutions and bodies, and to national administrations in Europe and beyond. Our Global EU cluster is dedicated to the study of the multifaceted field of EU external action and diplomacy, as well as cooperation with third countries.

Our work on EU external action and diplomacy
Under five consecutive European Commission framework contracts (FWC), EIPA has been at the forefront of teaching EU external action in the EU institutions since 2008, and in the European External Action Service (EEAS) since its establishment in 2011. Spanning diverse aspects of EU external action, ranging from decision-making and external assistance programming to geographic and thematic policies, EIPA’s Global EU team provides cutting-edge training in the EEAS, in various Directorates-General of the European Commission, in the General Secretariat of the Council and the European Parliament. Examples include courses on key EU policies such as the Common Security and Defence Policy, the Common Commercial Policy and the European Neighbourhood Policy; on bilateral relations such as relations with the US and China; on regional relations, for example with the Western Balkans and Africa, and on topical issues of EU foreign policy such as connectivity, climate diplomacy and strategic autonomy.

EIPA’s portfolio in matters of external action also covers the EU’s diplomatic system, diplomacy and diplomatic skills training. Having taught EU diplomats on practice and key issues in (EU) diplomacy since the EEAS’ establishment in 2011, we have a long track record delivering hands-on training informed by scholarship, policy and practice. Since 2020, we have been leading the EEAS’ flagship ‘Training Maps’, providing new recruits to the service with holistic training for a career in EU diplomacy, akin to the offer available for diplomats at national level.

Our work with third countries
EIPA has long-standing experience teaching EU affairs in neighbouring countries, including all Western Balkan countries. We provide specialised training on internal and external policies, and processes of the EU taking into account the political and legal features of each country’s engagement with the EU. We have recently further developed our portfolio on how to exert influence in Brussels as a third country in the context of our budding cooperation with neighbouring countries’ administrations.

At the intersection of Global EU and Effective Public Administration, EIPA helped set up the Regional School of Public Administration (ReSPA) in 2010. Among seminars delivered to civil servants from across the Western Balkans region, we inaugurated the Seasonal School on EU Accession Negotiations in 2020, aiming to prepare candidate countries for accession to the EU.

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