TRANSWORLD is a consortium of 13 academic and research centres from the EU, the US and Turkey formed to research the evolution of the transatlantic relationship and its role in shaping global governance architectures. TRANSWORLD is going to unfold for three and a half years, started in March 2012.
In an era of global flux, emerging powers and growing interconnectedness, transatlantic relations appear to have lost their bearings. As the international system fragments into different constellations of state and non-state powers across different policy domains, the US and the EU can no longer claim exclusive leadership in global governance. Not only the ability, but also the willingness of the US and the EU to exercise leadership together can no longer be taken for granted. Political, economic, and social elites on both shores of the Atlantic express different views on whether the US and the EU should be bound together, freelance, or seek alternative partnerships in a confusing multipolar world. Traditional paradigms to understand the transatlantic relationship are thus wanting. A new approach is needed to pinpoint the direction transatlantic relations are taking.
TRANSWORLD provides such an approach. By combining an inter-disciplinary analysis of transatlantic relations, including desk research, in-depth interviews, an elite survey and a sophisticated Delphi exercise to elaborate solid policy proposals, TRANSWORLD would: a) ascertain, differentiating among four policy domains (economic, security, environment, and human rights/democracy), whether transatlantic relations are drifting apart, adapting along an ad hoc cooperation-based pattern, or evolving into a different but resilient special partnership; b) assess the role of a re-defined transatlantic relationship in the global governance architecture; c) provide tested policy recommendations on how the US and the EU could best cooperate to enhance the viability, effectiveness, and accountability of governance structures. In so doing, TRANSWORLD would contribute to an inter-disciplinary transatlantic research area, with in-built connections to policy-making.
Freie Universität Berlin leads TRANSWORLD work package on Human Rights and Democracy. For more information on the project please visit http://www.transworld-fp7.eu/