The project “External Images of the EU (EXIE)” focuses on two major global challenges that the European Union (EU) is currently facing: 1) the establishment of a multipolar world order with emerging powers as prospective cooperation partners; and 2) the challenges of creating a secure, competitive and sustainable EU External Energy Policy (EUEEP).
The following objectives shape our research programme:
1. To identify the EU’s self-visions (response to the euro debt crisis, and in this context, images of the EUEEP) communicated via reputable news media.
2. To identify external media images of the EU responding to the euro debt crisis and, in this context, of its EEP (five case-studies of BRICS).
3. To compare internal vs. external media framing of the EUEEP, as well as vs. the framing of external energy policy of other global energy actors.
4. To compare the EU’s and the BRICS interpretations of the three norms of energy security, sustainability and competitiveness.
5. To outline recommendations which use images and perceptions to show EU policy makers how external images could facilitate (or subvert) the EU’s future “Good External Energy Governance” in an increasingly multipolar world.
Ultimately, this research will facilitate a comprehensive approach towards global awareness of a more cooperative multipolar external energy regime.
The comparison between self- and xeno-visions will highlight the areas of misunderstanding, miscommunication and misperception tainting the EU’s dialogues with Emerging Powers in the energy field. Energy is a cross-cutting issue involving the policy fields of external relations, trade, energy, development, environment, human rights and climate policies.