Conversations and Commentaries on Europe: Video Resources


ESC has online video offerings for select items from its extensive programming.  These resources are meant to ehance transatlantic conversations happening and enrich understandings of Europe here in the United States.

Resources can be used as classroom aids, out-of-classroom assignments, or as background for research papers.  Please provide proper citation of any of the resources used (examples below). Please let us know how you are using the videos! Send a message to with your stories. 

You can also watch our collection on the UCIS YouTube Channel.

Citation examples:

  • MLA
    European Studies Center. "Title of Video." University of Pittsburgh, Date it was posted, URL.
  • APA
    [European Studies Center, University of Pittsburgh]. (Year, Month Day it was posted). Title of the Video [Video file]. Retrieved from URL.
  • Chicago
    European Studies Center, University of Pittsburgh. "Title of Video." YouTube video, length. Date published. URL.


Trade, Technology, and the Transatlantic Relationship
A conversation with European Commission Executive Vice Preseidnet Valdis Dombrovskis

September 30, 2021





“Mis/disinformation Security: Protecting EU Values and Democracies”
Erica Edwards, University of Pittsburgh
Ralitsa Kovacheva, Sofia University
Julia Partheymüller, University of Vienna
Elena Bruni, LUISS Guido Carli, Italy, Fulbright Distinguished Lecturer, University of Pittsburgh 
Not to be confused with misinformation, meaning inaccurate information,
disinformation is false material meant to intentionally mislead or misinform individuals. Brought to the fore in 2016 with Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, disinformation threatens to erode trust in democratic systems, weaken individual freedoms, and increasingly undermine governments around the world.  While the U.S. has yet to make meaningful progress in addressing disinformation, Europe has moved forward with new legislation and initiatives. Join us for this session of Conversation on Europe in which we ask what steps Europe is taking to shore up EU values and counter disinformation. Rephrase
Not to be confused with misinformation, meaning inaccurate information, disinformation is false material meant to intentionally mislead or misinform individuals. Brought to the fore in 2016 with Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, disinformation threatens to erode trust in democratic systems, weaken individual freedoms, and increasingly undermine governments around the world. While the U.S. has yet to make meaningful progress in addressing disinformation, Europe has moved forward with new legislation and initiatives.
Join us for this session of Conversation on Europe in which we ask what steps Europe is taking to shore up EU values and counter disinformation.


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EU Enlargement- Spotlight on Slovenia

Tuesday January  23, 2024 at 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM ET
Simona Kukovič, School of Advanced Social Studies in Nova Gorica
Dr. Simona Kukovič is Associate Professor of Political Science and works at the School of Advanced Social Studies in Nova Gorica, Faculty of Information Studies, and the University of Ljubljana. Dr. Kukovič’s area of expertise is political and administrative leadership at the local level. She also conducts research in the areas of leadership, comparative regional and local government, local democracy and participation, public administration, and administrative and political processes and institutions. She is Slovenian representative to the COST networks, a member of the executive board of the Central European Political Science Association (CEPSA) and general editor of the international scientific journal Journal of Comparative Politics.
Miro Haček, University of Ljubljana
Dr. Miro Hacek is Professor at the Department of Political Science at the Faculty of Social Sciences. He runs courses Introduction to Political System, Introduction to Public Administration and Local and Regional Government. From 2005 to 2007 and 2013 to 2017 he was the Head of political science department; from 2007 to 2011 he was also Head of policy analysis and public administration department at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Ljubljana. From 1999 to 2009 he was General Secretary of the Slovenian Political Science Association, while in May 2009 he was elected President of the Association and in June 2011 for the vice-president of the Association. Between 2012-2018 he served as the Vice-President of Central European Political Science Association (CEPSA), and from 2018 he is current President of the Association.



EU Enlargement: Spotlight on Balti States (Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia)

Daunis Auers, University of Latvia

Dr, Auers is Professor of European Studies and Jean Monnet Chair at the University of Latvia. He studied at the London School of Economics and defended his PhD at University College London. He has been a Fulbright Scholar at the University of California-Berkeley (2005-2006) and a Baltic-American Freedom Foundation Scholar at Wayne State University in Detroit (2014). His book on The Comparative Government and Politics of the Baltic States: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in the 21st Century – was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2015. He is currently working on a monograph analyzing Nordic-Baltic integration and is a Fulbright program Visiting Professor at the University of Washington in Seattle during the fall and winter of 2023/2024.

Ivars Ijabs, PhD, Member of the European Parliament
Dr. Ijabs is a Member of the European Parliament, elected in 2019 from the electoral alliance “Attīstībai/Par!”. Before entering politics, he was a widely known political scientist, publicist, associated professor at the University of Latvia and a researcher at the Advanced Social and Political Research Institute of the University of Latvia.  In the European Parliament, Dr. Ijabs is active in the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE), the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON), the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO), and the Special Committee on Beating Cancer (BECA), representing the “Renew Europe” group. His priorities are with legislative proposals that would bring more EU funding for science, research, and innovation in Latvia.

EU Enlargement: Spotlight on Slovakia

Michal Vašečka, PhD, Bratislava Policy Institute
Dr. Vašečka is a sociologist by background and focuses his interests on issues of ethnicity, race, antisemitism, and migration studies. As an Associate Professor he operates at the Bratislava International School of Liberal Arts (BISLA) since 2015, he is a program director of Bratislava Policy Institute. Since 2012 Michal Vašečka serves as a representative of Slovakia in the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) of the Council of Europe. He operated at the Faculty of Social Studies of Masaryk University in Brno in 2002-2017 and at the Faculty of Social and Economic Sciences of the Comenius University in 2006-2009.
Miloslav Bahna, PhD., Slovak Academy of Science
Dr. Bahna is a senior researcher at the Institute for Sociology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, where he currently serves as the director. His research focuses on international migration, quantitative comparative sociology and quantitative survey methodology. He is a long term representative of Slovakia in the International Social Survey Programme and the CESSDA ERIC pan-European infrastructure. His first book focuses on post-2004 EU enlargement migration from Slovakia (VEDA, the publishing house of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, 2011).

"Yaoundé Conventions 60 years on: Africa-EU Relations Now"

Randall Halle, University of Pittsburgh
Catherine Koverola,  University of Pittsburgh
Michael Odijie, University College London
Pernille Røge, University of Pittsburgh 
Mounir Saidani, Editor-in-Chief of Omran Social Sciences/Arabb Center for Research and Political Studies-Doha. 
Abdou Seck, Gaston Berger University/Groupe D’Action et D’Etude Critique Africa (GAEC) 
It is 60 years since the signing of the Yaoundé Convention (1963).This was a moment in the history of decolonization when the Associated African States, 12 mainly young postcolonial Western Africa countries, signed a trade agreement with the also young European Economic Community. The Yaoundé Convention was part of the EEC’s Eurafrica initiative, an effort to maintain a
presence in the former colonies. Yaoundé initiated a series of trade and aid agreements that replaced the colonial relation with a developmental model. An era of trade and infrastructural development followed. However, many critics have suggested that this strategy of aid set off the pattern of uneven and unequal development. This Conversation on Europe and Africa takes this event as an opportunity to consider development aid in Africa historically and in its contemporary form. Our panelists bring a mix of historical and regional knowledge to the conversation

EU Enlargement: Spotlight on Czech Republic

Moderator: Pawel Lewicki, University of Pittsburgh 

Pavel Telicka, Czech Diplomat, Politician and Businessman
A former negotiator of Czech access to the EU and a former member of the EU Parliament (2014-2019), he contributed to the country’s integration into the EU throughout his career. He was elected as a Member of the European Parliament. Pavel Telicka was the 2nd Vice-Chair of the ALDE Group and, in the second part of his mandate, Vice-President of the European Parliament and coordinator of ALDE MEPs in the Committee on Transport and Tourism. Additionally, Pavel engaged in the Committee on Industry, Research, and Energy, where he was responsible for several pieces of legislation, especially on circular economy, cybersecurity, and energy policy. His other political interests and activities included the digital economy, better EU regulation, foreign policy, human rights, and democracy worldwide.
Carol Leff, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Dr. Carol Leff is Professor Emeritus from the Department of Political Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where she was a long-term executive and former director of the Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies Center. Her research and publications focus on Czech and Slovak politics, including EU relations and the post-communist transition. Additionally, she was the Editor (1991-1998), Board Member (2005)and President (2004-2008) of the Slovak Studies Association of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. Her publications include Interwar Czechoslovakia - A National State for a Multiethnic Population, Interwar East Central Europe, 1918-1941: The Failure of Democracy-Building, the Fate of Minorities (2020); Building Democratic Values in the Czech Republic since 1989, Central and Southeast European Politics since 1989 (2019);Slovakia and the Making of Czechoslovakia: Controversies and Legacies, Kosmas: Czechoslovak & Central European Journal, New Series 2 (2019).


"Polish Post-Election Results in Poland and their: Impact on European Security for Poland

Randall Halle, University of Pittsburgh
Paweł Lewicki, University of Pittsburgh

Jan Kubik, Rutgers University & University College of London
Michał Kotnarowski, Polish Academy of Sciences
Monika Nalepa, University of Chicago
October is the month of Parliamentary Elections in Eastern Europe’s
powerhouse, Poland. On 15 October, the electorate stands at a crossroads and our invited panelists will discuss the path the Polish voters will have chosen. In addition to the implications for Poland, our panelists will discuss what the election results mean for relations with Poland’s neighbors, Ukraine in particular. And given that Brussels has repeatedly drawn attention to Polish democratic backsliding under the current government, this CoE will ask what the election it means for the EU?

EU Enlargement: Spotlight on Poland

Anna Horolets, University of Warsaw
Dr. Horolest is an Associate Professor at the Institute of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, University of Warsaw. Her research interests include discourse analysis, Europeanization and migration studies. She authored the monograph "Obrazy Europy w polskim dyskursie publicznym [Images of Europe in Polish public discourse]" (Kraków, 2006).

Janusz Reiter, Former Poland Ambassador to Germany
Janusz Reiter attended German studies at the University of Warsaw. In 1977, he started working as a journalist. Between the years 1990-95, Mr. Reiter served as a Polish ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany. He was actively engaged in the rebuilding process of Polish-German relations. In 1996, he founded the Centre for International Relations (CIR), an independent thinktank, focused on foreign and security policies. He held this position for 11 years. In 2005, he became the Polish Ambassador to the United States, and in 2008 – a Special Emissary in regard of the climate changes and in this capacity, he participated in the preparations for climate changes conferences in Poznań and Copenhagen. Moreover, he was a deputy chairman of Presspublica Sp. z o. o. (Ltd.).


European Year of Skills: What's the Future of Labor Security in Europe?

MODERATOR: Randall Halle, University of Pittsburgh


Jane Gingrich, University of Oxford
Stefan Olsson, Deputy Director General, European Commission, DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion
Jamie Woodcock, University of Essex

The EU declared 2023 the Year of Skills to bring attention to the challenges the contemporary workforce faces and to the European responses. It is indeed a period of transition in labor, with no little unrest. The Yellow Vest strikes are perhaps the best known of the strikes that have taken place recently in Europe. This Conversation on Europe (CoE) considers the state of labor and the security of employment. In conversation with our panelists, we will consider labor struggles, the disruption of historical industries, the insecurity caused by inflation, energy scarcity, and AI. We will consider the future in Europe of the developing culturally diverse workforce? And we will hear about EU level initiatives to develop skilled workers for the 21st century.



Radical Populism and its Challenge to European Democracy: Insights from Austria

Reinhard Heinisch
University of Salzburg

The emergence of radical populism has impacted both established democracies, such as the United Kingdom when we think of Brexit, and new democracies, such as Hungary and Poland. Populist actors have also played a role in the COVID pandemic and in the context of Russia's war on Ukraine, as they mobilize people against mainstream policies that attempt to manage these crises. This talk will demonstrate that populism is closely related to the decline in legitimacy of established institutions and traditional elites in times of social and economic change. Drawing especially on the case of Austria, where radical populism has been long established, the lecture and discussion will provide an overview of this phenomenon and the state of political science research.