In March 2000, the European Union Heads of States and Governments met at the European council of Lisbon. This statement was the basis to what is called the Lisbon strategy or Lisbon process/agenda, a politic but mostly economic development plan for the members States of the European Union. Nowadays, this ambitious goal has certainly lost the shining enthusiasm that it had provided at first. In the years that have followed the Lisbon council of 2000, the economic context evolved in an unfavorable way, the too precise and too numerous objectives have quickly seem to be almost completely out of reach and the agenda seemed more than overwhelmed. The Lisbon strategy was going into so deep water at its half-point review that the spring European Council of March 2005 had to give the process a second impulse by renewing and refocusing the agenda. This article will try to answer the following everlasting question: Is the Lisbon strategy an unattainable project?
[...] This second front of competition was not predicted when the Lisbon strategy was elaborated A half-hearted assessment Five years after the presentation of the Lisbon strategy, the European economic growth is the weakest of the entire Western world. In June 2005, the British Prime Minister Tony Blair addressed a speech to the European Parliament in which he said: “what type of social model is it that has 20 millions unemployed in Europe, productivity rates falling behind those of the USA; that is allowing more science graduates to be produced by India than by Europe; and that, on any relative index of a modern economy - skills, research and development, patents, information technology, is going down not With this said, it is obvious that the Union was not achieving or aiming to achieve the objectives of the Lisbon process. [...]
[...] From 2001 to 2003, the rate indicates an increase from to The 2010 objective set at is probably one of the most “unreachable” one at this pace. By reading those rates and percentages, we are able to observe that progress has been made and will certainly continue to be made. The realistic perspective of not attaining the 2010 objectives leads to the general misconception of a lack of success thus far and a lack of progression for the future. When we look deeper in the numbers and percentages, we observe that the Scandinavian countries are having fewer difficulties to reach the Lisbon objectives. [...]
[...] Thinking that the Lisbon strategy did not manage to give any results or progress is a popular trap into which an informed reader should not fall in. The renewed Lisbon process will focus on growth and employment, two sectors where innovation and education will have a pre- eminent place. Those sectors, being of the member States competence, will be the first indicator by which we will observe if the political will of fulfilling the Lisbon agenda is stronger than national interests. [...]
[...] In “Facing the Challenge, the Lisbon strategy for growth and employment”, also known as the Wim Kok's report, it is stated that achieve the goals of higher growth and increased employment in order to sustain Europe's social model will require powerful, committed and convincing political leadership. Member States and the European Commission must re-double their efforts to make change happen.” They concluded in more precise propositions. They put emphasis on the new context in which the agenda will take place. [...]
[...] It is more likely to see in the future decade the creation of a European innovation pole like the European institute of technology as it has been suggested in the 2005 spring report of the Commission as an integral part of the renewed Lisbon strategy. Conclusion Overall, we can see that even though the Lisbon strategy went into good and bad times, the idea of having an agenda to help economic and social development is still more than relevant and urgent. It is known that the first years of the implementation of the strategy were difficult. [...]
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