The inaugural Summer School in Brussels 2017 organised as one of the key activities under the Jean Monnet Network (JMN) funding was successfully concluded in Brussels at 5pm on 11 August 2017. This one-week programme in Brussels followed the two-week programme in Kuala Lumpur which was held under the framework of Asia-Europe Institute’s ASEM Summer School on the theme of Cultural Pluralism in Asia and Europe.
Having explored the broad theme of cultural diversities in the respective regions, the one-week programme in Brussels (hosted by Maastricht University) focused on regional developments leading to the founding of the European Union (EU) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and explored how the EU and ASEAN organise regional cooperation to deal with common challenges.
The programme in Brussels commenced with a welcome speech by Dr Johan Adriaesen, Research Coordinator of the Centre for European Research in Maastricht (CERiM), Maastricht University, followed by two lectures (Regional Organisations and Multilateral Trade in Europe and Asia, and EU-ASEAN security cooperation: Multilateral solutions to common challenges). The Summer programme in Brussels was packed with intense lectures ranging from comparative regionalism to relations between the EU and ASEAN and exploring Asian and European cooperative cultures in the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) framework.
The students visited the College of Europe in Bruges and the United Nations University – Centre for Regional Integration Studies (UNU-CRIS) where the lecture on Comparing Regional Integration in Europe and Asia was delivered by its director, Prof Dr Luk van Langenhove.
Another interesting and educational tour was to the European Parliament which included a lecture by Mr Xavier Nuttin and a role play game. Other field trips included a visit to the Atomium and the House of European History.
On the last day of the Summer programme, the students, divided into six groups, gave group presentations looking at the three pillars of EU-ASEAN cooperation – in the area of economics; security; and socio-cultural matters.
A total of 23 students from various Singaporean, Southeast Asian and European Universities participated in the Summer School. All participants of the Summer School received a certification of participation. Group photos were also taken to mark the success of the 2017 Summer School.
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