We live in the era of cities: more than half the world’s population lives in urban areas and forecasts suggest that this trend will increase over the coming decades. We also live in the era of globalisation: the world today is inevitably interconnected and subject to interdependencies that oblige us to think and act outside the conventional theoretical and political frameworks.
In March 2017, Jean Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, presented his five possible future scenarios for a fragile European Union in search of a renewed compromise and probably a more flexible construction. Right after Juncker’s announcement, the four large Eurozone countries -Germany, France, Italy and Spain- met in Versailles to discuss their next moves towards greater integration and to draw a future Union at various speeds. The presence of the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, at that meeting in the outskirts of Paris, after a long period of absence in the directory commanding the ship of a European Union in crisis, was a turning point, from Madrid’s perspective. Spain was smoothly overcoming the deteriorated image of a deep economic and political crisis, in order to take a new role.
Carme Colomina, Associate Researcher, CIDOB
The attacks committed on August 17th and 18th 2017 in Barcelona and Cambrils (17A) surprised various analysts and observers, not because Spain was not likely to be attacked but because 17A was different from the recent attacks on European territory in certain ways. Both the profile of the perpetrators and the reactions it produced invite us to reflect on three questions: Why did 17A happen? Who are directly and indirectly responsible for this tragedy? And, how can another be prevented? Though these are the questions that tend to arise following each terrorist attack, the case of 17A is different from the others for one main reason: the fleeting nature of the debates that followed.
Moussa Bourekba (coord.)