Michel Foucher

Europe is the Future of the World Rethinking Society Publication date : May 15, 2009

At first, the goals of peace, democracy and prosperity lead Europeans to think only of themselves. But after 1989 they began to understand that their success could attract peripheral nations that were in a rush to join the centre. The result was an extension of the European Union, which may seem endless and worries many European citizens.

The new Europe cannot be limited to creating and protecting a closed group. But how can it make room for the “outside” and help the “inside” to live? How should the European Union act in a world driven by powerful geopolitical forces, when it is neither a state nor a nation? How can the EU influence decisions when the other powers are more inclined to showdowns than to compromise?

For Michel Foucher the answer lies in the acceptance of negotiated rules, in turning to civil and political actions as much as to military ones, in preventive actions, as well as in reviewed forms of generosity towards developing societies.

But Europe, he argues, should do more and do it better. Because of its culture of compromise and its practice of collective decision-making, Europe's political union prefigures a cooperative model, which is not only attractive but can also have an impact on the course of history. And this is what Europe's citizens expect of the EU.

The author argues that Europe is too self-centred. The extension and opening up of Europe will not suffice to inject it with new dynamism. In order to consolidate its strength, Europe should impose itself as a model for the future.

A brilliant analyst of global challenges, Michel Foucher is also a privileged observer and actor on the world stage. In this book, he describes his vision of a stronger Europe with greater influence on global affairs.

An expert in geopolitics and a diplomat, Michel Foucher was most notably an adviser to Hubert Védrine, director of the French Foreign Ministry's Centre for Analyses and Forecasts, and French ambassador to Latvia. He is a member of the French Foreign Affairs Council and the author of L'Obsession des frontières (2007).