A few weeks ago, I was talking with a friend in the pub about how important our bridging of the before and after of the internet era is for understanding my generation. I’m of an age where as a student essays were handwritten, research involved a physical library and the first email I sent was from a university library computer. Information was scarce and the world less densely connected.
This conversation prompted me to re-read Generation X, the generation-defining novel by Douglas Coupland. Published in the UK in 1992, I first read it two or three years later, just before heading to uni. My memory was of cool, detached twentysomethings having coolly detached conversations about the world while idling by a swimming pool in the heat. I remember enjoying it at the time, but I have never read anything else by Coupland, beyond his column in the FT Weekend magazine. I wasn’t at all sure how well it would hold up to the passage of time.
Continue reading “The Generation at the End of History – Book Review: Generation X by Douglas Coupland”
The Importance of the European Union Global Strategy Process
The European Union Global Strategy, Shared Vision, Common Action: A Stronger Europe. A Global Strategy for the European Union’s Foreign and Security Policy (EUGS ), was welcomed by the European Council in June 2016. The strategy aimed for a ‘step-change’ in the European approach to security and defence. The rapid and coherent follow up action is widely seen to reflect ‘a new seriousness in Europe about strengthening our joint foreign and security policies’. One year on in June 2017, Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission (HR/VP), noted that in security and defence, ‘more has been achieved in the last ten months than in the last ten years’. Continue reading “The Network behind the European Union Global Strategy. Part 1: The Importance of the Process”