Paris, 28th-29th May. #ecfr18

Welcome to ECFR's Annual Council Meeting page. 

The Annual Council Meeting was live on the 26th and 27th of June. Follow the conversation on #ECFR17

Watch: "‘ECFR talk’: A strong Europe in the world of today" with Sigmar Gabriel, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Germany. Read his full speech here.

You can find more video recordings of the event on our Facebook page.

A selection of audio recordings from the event is available on Mixcloud. Subscribe here to make sure you don't miss them!


The ECFR Annual Council Meeting is one of the leading conferences on Europe’s foreign policy. We follow the energy of the debate and this year we met in Paris on 28 & 29 of May.

With the multilateral order in recession, and the emergence of a new era of great power competition, we were focusing our attention on how to defend Europe in the New World Disorder.

Our intimate forum, gathering ECFR's Council Members once a year, stands out by retaining the intimacy and interactivity of a private club, allowing a range of high-level speakers from Europe and beyond to look creatively and practically at Europe’s long-term prospects and its role in the world.


ACM Agenda - Monday 28 May 2018


12:45 - 12:50 Welcome

By Carl Bildt, Co-chair of the Board of ECFR


12:50 - 13:00 Scene-Setter

By Mark Leonard, Director of ECFR


13:00 - 13:45 Europe and the world order: ECFR's Power Audits

Find here the ECFR Power Audits on China, Russia, Turkey and the United States.


Asli Aydintasbas, Senior Policy Felllow, ECFR

Francois Godement, Director of the Asia and China Programme, ECFR

Kadri Liik, Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR


Mark Leonard, Director of ECFR


13:45 - 14:45 Can Europe defend itself in a new world disorder?


Denis Mercier, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation at NATO

Arnaud Danjean, Member of the European Parliament

Norbert Röttgen, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Bundestag

Nathalie Tocci, Director of the International Affairs Institute

Moderator: Philip Stephens, Chief Political Commentator, Financial Times  


14:45 - 15:15 ECFR Keynote: The European Intervention Initiative

Speech by Florence Parly, Minister for the Armed Forces of France, on the European Intervention Inititive.


15:40 - 16:40 Breakout sessions in parallel

China: The last hope for multilateralism?


Mathieu Duchatel, Senior Policy Fellow at ECFR

Steven Everts, Senior Advisor at EEAS

Ana Palacio, Member of the Spanish Council of State and former Minister of Foreign Affairs


Almut Moeller, Head of ECFR Berlin Office


Rethinking cooperation with Libya and the Sahel in an age of migration and populism


Mary Fitzgerald, Libya Specialist

Bert Koenders, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands

Andrew Lebovich, Visiting Fellow at ECFR

Pierre Vimont, former Secretary General at EEAS


Alessandra Galloni, Global News Editor at Reuters



16:45 - 17:45 Can Europe be the saviour of the liberal order?


Timothy Garton Ash, Professor of European Studies, University of Oxford

John Ikenberry, Albert G. Milbank Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University

Karolina Wigura, Member of the Board, Kultura Liberalna Foundation

Moderator: Sylvie Kauffmann, Editorial Director at Le Monde 


17:45 - 18:45 Saudi Arabia and Iran as the new decisive frontline in the Middle East

Read more in the policy brief The Middle East's New Battle Lines.


Abdel Aziz Abu Hamad Aluwaisheg, Assistant Secretary General for Political and Negoatiation Affairs, GCC

Bassma Kodmani, Execeutive Director, Arab Reform Initiative

Seyed Hossein Mousavian, Former Iranian Ambassador and Foreign Policy Advisor to the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council

Justin Vaïsse, Director of Policy Planning, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, France

Moderator:  Julien Barnes-Dacey, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme, ECFR


ACM Agenda - Tuesday 29 May 2018


09:00 - 09:30 ECFR Keynote: How to save the European Union.

Speech by George Soros, Founder and Chair of Open Society Foundations


09:30 - 10:00 Western Balkans: The EU and great power competition 


Aleksander Vučić, President of Serbia

Edi Rama, Prime Minister of Albania

Radmila Šekerinska, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of Macedonia

Michael Roth, Minister of State for Europe, Federal Republic of Germany

Moderator: Vessela Tcherneva, Deputy Director of Advocacy and Programmes at ECFR


10:30 - 11:30 EU on Russia/Ukraine: Time to move beyond sanctions?


Lina Linkevicius, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania

Nicu Popescu, Senior Analyst, EUISS

Hannes Swoboda, Former President of Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats, European Parliament

Moderator: Christine Ockrent, Presenter of Affaires Etrangeres, France Culture


11:50 - 12:50 Breakout sessions in parallel


Reviewing Europe's foreign, security and development policy in light of MFF budget discussions


Valerie Amos, Director at SOAS, University of London

Ales Chmelar, State Secretary for Foreign Affirs, Office of the Government of the Czech Republic

Shahin Vallee, Senior Economist at Soros Fund Management


Susi Dennsion, Director of European Power Programme at ECFR


The attack on the non-proliferation order: The cases of Iran and North Korea


Nicolas de Riviere, Director General for Political Affairs and Security, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France

Eran Etzion, Policy Entrepreneur and former Deputy Head of National Security Council of Israel

Ellie Geranmayeh, Senior Policy Fellow at ECFR

Bruno Tertrais, Deputy Director, Foundation pour la recherche strategique


Delphine O, Foreign Affairs Committee, Assemblee Nationale 


The digital revolution: Disrupting politics, economics, war and foreign policy


Berit Anderson, CEO and Editor-in-Chief at

Anthony Giddens, Life Fellow at University of Cambridge

Alexander Klimburg, Director Cyber Policy and Resilience Prgramme, The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies

Viktor Mayer-Schoenberger, Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation, University of Oxford


Ulrike Franke, Policy Fellow at ECFR


13:00 - 14:00 "La Grande Marche" at the Parliament elections: Opportunity for change in 2019?


Pieyre-Alexandre Anglade, Member of Assemblee Nationale

Gordon Bajnai, former Prime Minister of Hungary

Diana Janse, Senior Foreign Policy Advisor, Swedish Moderate Party

Moderator: Tom Nuttall, Charlemagne Columnist, The Economist


You can find photos from the ACM 2018 on our Flickr page:

ECFR Council Meeting 2018

  • Asli Aydintasbas
    Asli Aydintasbas
    Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR
  • Pieyre-Alexandre Anglade
    Pieyre-Alexandre Anglade
    Member, Assemblée Nationale
  • Emma Bonino
    Emma Bonino
    former Foreign Minister of Italy
  • Aleš Chmelař
    Aleš Chmelař
    State Secretary for EU Affairs, Czech Republic
  • Mathieu Duchâtel
    Mathieu Duchâtel
    Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR
  • Timothy Garton Ash
    Timothy Garton Ash
    Professor of European Studies, University of Oxford
  • Ellie Geranmayeh
    Ellie Geranmayeh
    Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR
  • Anthony Giddens
    Anthony Giddens
    Life Fellow, King's College, University of Cambridge
  • François Godement
    François Godement
    Director of Asia and China Programme, ECFR
  • Arancha González
    Arancha González
    Executive Director, International Trade Centre (ITC)
  • Seyed Hossein Mousavian
    Seyed Hossein Mousavian
    Former Iranian Ambassador and Foreign Policy Advisor
  • John Ikenberry
    John Ikenberry
    Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University
  • Alexander Klimburg
    Alexander Klimburg
    Director Cyber Policy and Resilience Program, HCSS
  • Bert Koenders
    Bert Koenders
    former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands
  • Ivan Krastev
    Ivan Krastev
    Chair, Centre for Liberal Strategies
  • Andrew Lebovich
    Andrew Lebovich
    Visiting Fellow, ECFR
  • Kadri Liik
    Kadri Liik
    Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR
  • Linas Linkevicius
    Linas Linkevicius
    Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania
  • Viktor Mayer-Schönberger
    Viktor Mayer-Schönberger
    Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation, University of Oxford
  • Denis Mercier
    Denis Mercier
    Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, NATO
  • Christine Ockrent
    Christine Ockrent
    Commentator and writer
  • Ana Palacio
    Ana Palacio
    Member of the Spanish Council of State
  • Laurence Parisot
    Laurence Parisot
    former Vice President, IFOP
  • Nicu Popescu
    Nicu Popescu
    Senior Analyst, EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS)
  • Edi Rama
    Edi Rama
    Prime Minister of Albania
  • Michael Roth
    Michael Roth
    Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Germany
  • Norbert Röttgen
    Norbert Röttgen
    Chairman, Foreign Affairs Committee of the Bundestag
  • Marietje Schaake
    Marietje Schaake
    Member of European Parliament
  • Jeremy Shapiro
    Jeremy Shapiro
    Research Director, ECFR
  • George Soros
    George Soros
    Founder and Chairman, Open Society Foundations
  • Manlio Di Stefano
    Manlio Di Stefano
    Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, 5* Movement
  • Nathalie Tocci
    Nathalie Tocci
    Director, Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Justin Vaisse
    Justin Vaisse
    Director of Policy Planning Staff, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France
  • Shahin Vallée
    Shahin Vallée
    Senior Economist, Soros Fund Management
  • Pierre Vimont
    Pierre Vimont
    Former Secretary-General, European External Action Service
  • Aleksandar Vučić
    Aleksandar Vučić
    President of Serbia