GIES features a strong interest in regionalism and interregionalism. This becomes clear through its prominent focus on the European Union (EU) and the latter’s external relations and external policies. While the multiple crises that are affecting the EU are increasingly raising questions about the future and resilience of the EU, the EU remains a key example of regional integration. In scrutinizing the policies of the EU, GIES has developed a strong expertise in the external relations of the EU, including its relations with other regions and other regional institutions and organisations, such as the interparliamentary relations between the European Parliament and the ACP countries, and the EU’s relations with the Eurasian Economic Union, as well as through regional trade agreements.

This research strand involves close cooperation with the UNU-CRIS based in Bruges.