Global Development Institute Blog

Nick Jepson and Seth Schindler, in collaboration with Nana de Graaff and Imogen T. Liu, are organising a workshop entitled “Europe in US-China rivalry: The implications of great power politics”. The workshop will take place on 9-10 October 2023 in Amsterdam and there is a call for papers out with a deadline of 15th June 2023. Full details on how to submit a proposal can be found at the bottom of this page.


Europe stands at a critical juncture in a world of intensifying geopolitical and economic competition. Long-standing tensions within the European Union over the trans-Atlantic alliance come to a head in Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act while concerns over the transfer of critical technology and reciprocal market access have prompted a new, more assertive EU-China strategy geared toward ‘de-risking’ the relationship.

While the fragmentation of the contemporary world order is largely viewed through the lens of the US-China rivalry, the role of Europe – the EU, European periphery and neighbourhood states – have been neglected in understanding the tectonic shifts unfolding on the global stage.

Whether as a third pole in US-China rivalry, a non-aligned political and economic powerhouse or a variegated site of contestation for great power politics, Europe’s role is likely to be multivalent and contradictory, calling for much needed theoretical and empirical reflection on the causal power of Europe. We welcome theoretical and empirical contributions that speak to, but are not limited to, the following potential themes:

  • Tensions, controversies and alliances within Europe and the variegated geopolitics of US-China rivalry
  • Theorising Europe and European states, broadly conceived, in great power politicsEurope and great power dynamics in third countries
  • Europe and the new global division of labour: fragmentation and decoupling of production and supply chains
  • EU as ‘third pole’ and security policy
  • Green transition and industrial competition: policy, investment and macro-financial regulation
  • Technonationalism and the regulation of digital firms, logistics networks and data protection
  • The geoeconomic turn, strategic autonomy, anti-coercion, defensive trade and investment policy
  • De-risking the relationship: Chinese political, economic and social engagement with Europe
  • Implications for North-South flows: EU global development aid strategy
  • Historical perspectives on Europe and great power politics

Selected papers will be invited to participate with the goal of preparing a special issue. We aim to bring together scholars from across social science disciplines to present work that builds theory, analyses new empirical findings, and draws out the policy and practical implications for Europe vis a vis great power rivalry in the contemporary global political economy.

We particularly welcome contributions from underrepresented geographies and aim for a good balance of participants across different levels of seniority. The workshop is funded by the Vrije Universiteit Interdisciplinary Centre for European Studies (VICES) and the China in Europe Research Network (CHERN), inclusive of travel to and from Amsterdam and one-night’s accommodation for selected participants.

Submission of proposals

Proposals should be submitted by June 15th 2023 to

Nana de Graaf, Nick Jepson, Imogen T. Liu or Seth Schindler

And should include:

  • A short bio including author’s contact details (max 300 words)
  • Abstract that addresses any of the potential themes or speak to the general theme of the workshop on Europe and the implications of US-China rivalry (500 words)

Results will be communicated by 30th June 2023.

Top image source: Wiki Commons via Territory of American Canada