Originating in an initiative by the European Parliament, the European Neighbourhood Policy Chair was established at the Natolin campus of the College of Europe and became operational on 1 July 2012. Ever since its creation, the Chair is led by Professor Tobias Schumacher.
In addition to conducting research activities, the mission of the Chair is to teach and encourage reflection on EU and EU member states’ foreign policies towards the EU’s eastern and southern neighbourhoods and to familiarize students with the multi-facetted security-related, political and socio-economic developments and structures in both neighbourhoods.
The Chair host three permanent research fellows, as well as several post-doctoral research fellows for a period of either six or twelve months, and is supported by a Chair assistant.
Throughout the years, the ENP Chair has become a centre of academic excellence. This is reflected in the considerable number of books, research articles, book chapters and policy papers that it has published in prominent outlets.
The Chair is at the heart of the new major in EU Neighbours and European Neighbourhood Policy offered within the European Interdisciplinary Studies programme at the Natolin campus of the College of Europe. Several ENP scholarships are offered each academic year to students coming from EU member states as well as to university graduates coming from ENP partner countries who are interested in studying the ENP and the EU’s neighbourhood in the framework of the MA in European Interdisciplinary Studies. ENP scholarship holders are the largest group of students at the Natolin campus.
From its inception, the ENP Chair has been organizing high-profile guest lectures, international conferences and round-tables, as well as the Natolin Neighbourhood Days – a cycle of debates focusing on topical, ENP- and EU neighbourhood-related issues, bringing together eminent academics, decision-makers, think tank experts and other opinion shapers. The Chair directs also the Natolin Neighbourhood Ambassadorial Talks, and its flagship initiatives are the annual ENP PhD Summer School and the Horizon 2020 project MEDRESET, in which Professor Tobias Schumacher and Professor Münevver Cebeci direct one work package.
The Chair acquires books and other publications concerning EU and EU member states’ foreign policy towards the EU’s neighbourhood and concerning Eastern Europe, the South Caucasus, the Middle East and North Africa; they form part of the extensive collections of the Natolin campus library.