For an alliance between nations that was originally conceived purely at the market economy level, this would be a fundamental step towards political unity. Within the framework of the project, particular emphasis is currently being focused on investigating the legal scope for action offered by the Lisbon Treaty in this context.
In its early stages, the European Union was primarily an economic community. Now, however, its mandate is developing beyond the dimensions of the market economy. The Lisbon Treaty, which took effect on 1 December 2009, contains new rules for a more socially oriented Europe: a social clause, a reference to a social market economy and also a new competence base for the provision of services of general economic interest (telecoms, energy, transport, etc.). In addition, fundamental social rights are now safeguarded by the European Charter of Fundamental Rights that has been declared binding. Overall, these measures could serve as a basis on which to develop a European (multilevel) welfare system and thus a stronger European social identity.
In her professorial thesis entitled "Social Market Rules for Europe", Dr. Dragana Damjanovic from the Institute for Austrian and European Public Law at the Vienna University of Economics and Business analyses how a legal framework for a multilevel European welfare system could develop on these new basic principles. One of her hypotheses is oriented towards the EU-wide integration of services of general economic interest, something of which we all have personal experience through the deregulation of the telecoms and energy sectors. It assumes that an integration of welfare state sectors at an EU level might exhibit a similarly-directed form of deregulation - despite the new rules contained in the Lisbon Treaty for a more social Europe.
In an attempt to answer these questions, Dr. Damjanovic is now investigating specific sectors of the welfare state - healthcare, health insurance and higher education. Here, she intends to show the extent to which and the basis on which integration at EU level has already taken place, as well as how the new social rules in the Lisbon Treaty might impact these processes of integration.STATUS QUO VADIS?
On the one hand, EU integration in these areas is based on the EU market rules such as basic freedoms and competition law and displays a tendency to open up markets - as in the case of services of economic interest (telecoms, energy, transport, etc.). On the other hand, the Europeanisation of the member states' welfare systems is built on the rules on EU citizenship, which have been construed by the European Court of Justice to be a central element in the future social Europe. These developments are again leading to greater coordination between the member states' welfare systems at European level. Both processes have fundamental effects on the member states' sovereignty to establish and organise their welfare systems.
It will be particularly interesting to see how the fundamental social rights enshrined in the Charter will be instrumentalised in this process in future by the European actors. Will the fundamental social rights become "real rights" (enforceable in courts), or will they just remain principles?
Just how positive an impact the international harmonisation of differing service sectors can have at a personal level is something with which Dr. Damjanovic is familiar: before qualifying for her present sponsorship under the FWF's Elise Richter Programme, she previously spent time studying in Madrid and earned a doctorate at the University of Vienna and a Master's degree at Berkeley, California.Scientific Contact:
Marta Korinkova | PR&D
Mathematical confirmation: Rewiring financial networks reduces systemic risk
22.06.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Frugal Innovations: when less is more
19.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
22.09.2017 | Life Sciences
22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy