EuroComment in 2023

A New Beginning 

Over the past two decades, EuroComment has produced a continuous flow of well-documented and authoritative studies of the European Council and established two distinctive, high level discussion groups, the European Strategy Forum and the Dialogue Group. This work will continue. It will do so however within a new and larger framework in which we will have a broader scope of publications and contributors and a more developed meeting and dialogue programme. As a result, and by common consent our output will no longer be published by Leuven University Press. (please see the joint press release on the news page)

Continued and continual focus on the European Council

The European Council is the heart of the European Union's system of government. Operating as it does  through 27 member state governments as well as through the Commission and other EU institutions and agencies, the EU does not have a single executive. Composed of the leaders of the 27 member state governments and the president of the Commission, the European Council brings the principal actors together in one institution.

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The scope of the EUROPEAN COUNCIL STUDIES will be enlarged and a new EU Priorities Group will be added to our meeting programme.

Essays in contemporary history rather than journalism, the character of the European Council Studies will be maintained. The scope of the series will nevertheless be enlarged. As the hub of EU government, the European Council demands the engagement of Europe’s leaders on a continuous basis. It is in other words a process as well as a series of discrete events.

The Monthly Commentary on
EU Strategy

This is a new publication. Written by a team of authors, each of whom has an intimate acquaintance with the way in which the EU system works, the commentaries will be 5000 words or more in length. The focus of each of them will be the collective agenda of the leaders of 27 sovereign states and the Commission. As such it can and does encompass any policy areas which the leaders regard as important or which events oblige them to consider.  The subject-matter of the monthly commentaries is bound therefore to vary. The commentaries will however be tethered to political and institutional realities, which impose constraints on what the EU can do. That is why the links which we intend to establish between the monthly commentaries and the EU Priorities Group, which is described on the Meeting Programme page, are so important. Composed of senior policymakers in the member states as well as the institutions and powerful influencers in the business world, the media and the research community, it will ensure that the commentaries are grounded in reality.

The Pre-Summit Briefings

Issued on the eve of each meeting of the European Council or the Euro Area Summit, the Pre-Summit notes review and explain the agenda and predict the likely outcome.

The Post-Summit Briefings

Appearing seven days after each meeting of the heads of state and government, these notes of approximately 5000 words in length provide a comprehensive analysis of the discussion and its outcome. Based on oral and documentary sources which are not normally available, they provide a unique and authoritative insight into decision-making at the heart of the EU.

The European Council
Annual Review

The Annual Review is a new series which is to be launched towards the end of 2023. It will replace the European Council Notes published hitherto by Leuven University Press. Each volume will cover developments during the whole of the previous year. It will draw on the Post-Summit Briefings and Monthly Commentaries and on the sources that underpin them. Its scope will however be wider and there will be several authors.

Former President of the European Council

"Peter Ludlow is an exceptionally shrewd observer of the European Council meetings, the main political stage of the Union. Like no-one else he understands the mechanisms of undertaking decisions and what happens behind the scenes before they are taken. Only he is able to write about them with such surgical precision, compellingly and with a great sense of humour.”

Herman Van Rompuy

Former President of the European Council 
“No one will be able to write a history of the European Council, and therefore of the Union, without consulting Peter Ludlow’s Eurocomments. An invaluable source of information and insight.”

Alex Barker

Former head of the Financial Times'
Brussels Bureau
“EuroComment’s notes are an extraordinary window on Europe’s top table. Everybody who knows how closely they are read by summit participants understands their unrivalled value.”