Issue: 61: Perspectives on Europe


Working Notes – Issue 61 Editorial

With the Referendum on the Lisbon Treaty just weeks away the build-up has been gathering momentum. Various civil society groups including those comprising some of our best known arts and sports celebrities, farmers, lawyers, ‘women for Europe’ have publicised their support for a Yes vote. Whatever the outcome of the vote on October 2nd, it... Read more »


Europe: What is Pope Benedict Thinking?

It may seem strange, as Ireland prepares for its second vote on the Lisbon Treaty on October 2, 2009, to focus on the vision of Europe of the current pope. After all, are his views not essentially religious and are Ireland’s concerns with Lisbon not, in the main, economic, social and political? At first glance,... Read more »

International Issues  

Ireland, Europe and Catholic Social Teaching: Shared Values?

In May this year, on the last stretch of the ancient pilgrim route to Santiago de Compostela in Spain, etched on a large stone, for all to see, were the words ‘No Irish in EU’. The pilgrim route celebrates St James the Apostle and has been walked by Christians for well over a thousand years,... Read more »

International Issues  

Taking Our Rightful Place Ireland, the Lisbon Treaty and Democracy

The Irish electorate has voted in favour of many European treaties since the original treaty of accession in 1971. Until the Nice Treaty any deal struck by Irish negotiators with their European partners included generous financial incentives. These incentives are indisputable and easily grasped. They have been our point of entry into Europe up till... Read more »

International Issues  


Euro barometer surveys consistently show that Irish people have a positive attitude towards the European Union. Research on how people voted in the referendum on the Lisbon Treaty found that this positive attitude was the strongest single factor affecting people’s voting decisions.1 It also found that a low level of knowledge of what was in... Read more »

International Issues  

Towards the Lisbon Treaty Referendum: The View from Europe

The title proposed to me implies a double focus: actually, a double double focus. If the rest of this edition of Working Notes offers perspectives on Europe, my task is to discuss perspectives from Europe. Two doublets are implicit in the title: ‘The view’: but whose view? The view of the political establishment in Brussels?... Read more »

International Issues