This year, on the 1st of May, 15 years will have passed since the momentous Eastern Enlargement of the EU. When twelve new countries joined in 2004, most of them formerly part of the Soviet bloc, it signified a symbolic re-unification of the continent, which was now breathing with both lungs, to mention only two metaphors that have emerged over the years. But what has happened since? This conference will look back at the European integration of the four Central European countries of the Visegrad Group in particular. On the first panel we want to focus on the biggest challenge that has emerged over this time period, democratic backsliding. It will try to provide an overview of how we arrived at this situation, and analyse possible ways forward, also in the context of Article 7 and EU budget conditionality. The second panel will look at the state of the European Union 15 years after the enlargement and seek to discuss which role the Central European countries are playing, could be playing and should be playing in the future development of European Integration.
Please find the detailed programme and the list of speakers in the PDF attachment below.