23 November 2009
ESI conference in Amsterdam - Communicating Europe
Pieter De Gooijer
Pieter De Gooijer

The latest phase of ESI's Communicating Europe project ended with a one day meeting in Amsterdam on 23 November 2009 of senior West Balkans officials working on European integration issues. They were there to discuss Dutch perspectives on EU enlargement and the lessons from the visa liberalisation process, and to meet Dutch policy-makers, TV and newspaper editors.

The workshop explored consensus building in the Netherlands and looked at how the Dutch political class and interest groups define fundamental foreign policy positions. It also discussed the lessons from 2009 for the future of the enlargement process, with a new European Parliament in place, with a new European Commission, and the Lisbon Treaty reforms, coming into effect, and with a successful visa liberalisation process. This was the eighth workshop in the Communicating Europe series of informal events.

The speakers from Amsterdam included Pieter De Gooijer, Director-General for Political Affairs, Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dion van den Berg, Senior Policy Adviser, IKV Pax Christi, Ben Crum, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Free University of Amsterdam, and Marc Kranenburg, Diplomatic Editor, NRC Handelsblad. The workshop engaged 18 senior figures from seven West Balkan states – from Government, TV and NGOs.

The event was hosted by the Felix Meritis Centre in Amsterdam. It was funded by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office under the Strategic Programme Fund and supported by the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the European Fund for the Balkans.

Srdjan Majstorovic and Boris Vujcic
Srdjan Majstorovic and Boris Vujcic
Chris Langdon, Gerald Knaus, and Alexandra Stiglmayer (ESI)
Chris Langdon, Gerald Knaus, and Alexandra Stiglmayer (ESI)
About us
Photo credits
Alan Grant is an Irish photographer who travelled extensively in the Balkans and other countries and regions of the world. Thanks to him, ESI is able to show fascinating pictures of the Balkans: the facades of Tirana, the painted mosques of Travnik, the fabulous old houses of Plovdiv and the spectacular blue of water - dark in the Bay of Kotor, emerald in the river valleys of Bosnia, deep blue in Ohrid, twinkling in the Aegean Sea and on the Bosporus.

You can find out more about Alan Grant on his websites:
Jonathan Lewis lives between London and Istanbul. He moved to London and spent many years studying photography and now specialises in photojournalism, documentary photography and commercial work for a wide variety of private and commercial clients in the UK, Europe and Turkey. His work has appeared in a number of magazines and publications and is used on the ESI website as well.

You can find out more about Jonathan Lewis on his website www.jonathanlewisphoto.com