Tomáš Sedláček – The European (R)evolution – Schuman Lecture 2014, on 7 May 2014 (Part 1)
Tomáš Sedláček – The European (R)evolution – Schuman Lecture 2014, on 7 May 2014 (Part 2)
The silent revolution called the European Union has enriched us tremendously. We live in a world that in many ways surpasses even the most idyllic dreams that we as Europeans allowed ourselves to dream a generation ago. Today, the main idea of European integration is to ‘make trade, not war’; a kind of paraphrase of the sixties motto ‘make love, not war’. Both of these objectives have been met. A continent that was once very bloody now lives in peace and Europeans peacefully exchange culture, services and goods.
It is this variable (economics), which leads us to reflect on the disintegration of the eurozone and perhaps the EU. It might make sense to continue with European integration, but stop considering it just as an economic exercise. Perhaps it is time to think in terms other than economic expansion and growth. Economics has its limits and we need to grow and move on to something else. Is this naive? Two generations ago, it was naive to think that Europe would leave behind our obsession with geographic expansion, so why should we not give up the idea of endless economic expansion?
Tomáš Sedláček (1977) is an economist. He worked as an economic advisor to President Václav Havel and to the Minister of Finance. He is a chief macroeconomic strategist at ČSOB Banking Group. He is a member of the Narrative of Europe group, commissioned by Manuel Barroso, a platform which aims to give artists, intellectuals and scientists a platform for discussing and expressing ideas about Europe. He is Council Member to World Economic Forum. He was a member of the National Economic Council, an advisory body to the Czech government.
His book Economics of Good and Evil became an international bestseller, which received positive reviews from the press (Financial Times, New York Times and Handelsblatt). It was on Der Spiegel’s bestseller list for weeks and was awarded the Deutscher Wirtschaftsbuchpreis in 2012.
Every year Maastricht University and the City of Maastricht jointly organize this lecture in commemoration of Robert Schuman and the Rome (1957) and Maastricht (1992) Treaties. Robert Schuman (1886-1963) was French Minister of Foreign Affairs and co-founder of the European Community of Coal and Steel, the antecedent of the modern EU. Studium Generale facilitates the lectures.