Welcome to ENLIGHTEN

“The ENLIGHTEN collaborative project is concerned with the legitimacy of European governance in dealing with what we call fast and slow-burning crises. Fast burning crises are readily identified – they are the political and economic shocks of recent years, which have provided direct challenges to European institutions and their governance modalities. Slow-burning crises are less obvious yet no less important. In slow-burning crises the political, social, and economic challenges are long-term and widespread, but do not generate immediate political attention.

The ENLIGHTEN research team are investigating both fast- and slow-burning crises in the European political economy to understand how to bolster and maintain the legitimacy of Europe’s governing institutions. We will be thinking through these problems while using a number of conceptual and methodological innovations to trace expert networks and institutional changes. To ground us we are specifically addressing the following policy fields that map onto our fast and slow-burning distinction: Banking Crises and Fiscal SustainabilityDeficit Reduction and Continuity of Public ServicesYouth Employment and Inclusive Growth.

Thank you for visiting this website. Our excellent Impact team will ensure that you will hear much more about ENLIGHTEN in the coming years, as well as have access to our pioneering research.”

Len Seabrooke, Chief Scientist, ENLIGHTEN

Our partners

News & Events

An ambitious look at the EU crises

Since the Global Financial Crisis, the European Union has faced a series of economic and legal crises, including on issues such as banking, taxation, unemployment, austerity cuts, and competition over the rule of law. These entrenched and interdependent issues have pushed the limits of existing European modes of governance and called into question the legitimacy …

Read the article

Crises in the European Union

This one-day event considers central themes in contemporary EU governance, especially in relation to the consequences of the economic and financial crisis. It does so by focusing on three central cross-cutting themes that allow for a direct conversation between ENLIGHTEN and TransCrisis research that will generate forward-looking insights for the worlds of practice and research.

Read the article

Resilience: a documentary by H2020 project Enlighten

  The 2010 economic crisis rocked the European project to its core, testing the resilience of its institutions to their limits. The crisis challenged the EU institutions’ capacity to absorb disturbance and reorganize while undergoing change so as to still retain essentially the same function, structure, identity, and responsiveness. This documentary explores how European institutions …

Read the article

ENLIGHTEN organises its final Agora Forum to discuss research findings

Next October 9th and 10th, international academics, researchers, policy makers and civil society representatives will gather at the Institut d’études européennes of the Université libre de Bruxelles for a series of roundtable discussions on the findings of the Horizon 2020 project “European Legitimacy in Governing through Hard Times: the role of European Networks” (ENLIGHTEN). Over …

Read the article

#EUEA17 Closing Panel | What Future for Transatlantic Solidarity?

Professors Mario Telò, Richard Higgot, Anne Weyembergh, Karel de Gucht and Alexander Mattelaer shared the panel “What Future for Transatlantic Solidarity: from Geostrategic Partnership to Competition?, a lively discussion on the US-EU relationship in the age of Donald Trump.  

Read the article