Why Europe cannot become a giant Switzerland – geopolitical challenges in times of covid-19

When loading this audio player, your personal data will be processed by SoundCloud in line with their privacy policy. Your data may be transferred to servers in the US. Find out more in our privacy policy.

Load content

The Covid-19 pandemic has shaken the EU’s conception of order and exposed a gap between European aspirations and actions. Firstly, Europeans are confronted with the fact that raw power, not rules, is the main factor determining today’s global dynamics. Secondly, global politics are now centred rather in Asia than Europe; the Sino-American rivalry has shifted attention away from European issues.

In this week’s podcast, Mark Leonard stars as guest – not host – to discuss with policy fellow Ulrike Franke und head of ECFR’s Berlin office Jana Puglierin these “twin shocks”. What are possible ways to deal with these new geopolitical realities shock and what does this mean for the transatlantic relationship? To what extent will the US elections be a game-changer? Should Europe reinvent its geopolitical approach? And in which ways can Germany help Europe to redefine its strategy in this deeply changed scenario?

Further reading: “Geopolitical Europe in times of covid-19 ” by Mark Leonard: https://www.europesfutures.eu/vault/geopolitical-europe-in-times-of-covid-19

This podcast was recorded on 7 October 2020.


“Possible Minds: 25 Ways of Looking at AI” by John Brockman

“Zeitenwende”, Special Edition of the Munich Security Report on German Foreign and Security Policy.

Cover image: ©