Hi there! We are the Policy Centre for European Affairs here at King’s Think Tank. For everyone at KTT – whether you are a fresher or returner, whether currently in London or studying remotely from abroad – the first few weeks of this semester have been tumultuous and certainly very different from what we are all used to. That’s why at KTT we strive to maintain our high academic standards and be a constant in this otherwise so very chaotic time. We have also had to adapt and our first event was our attempt to merge our usually so busy socials and our demanding academic events into one online get-to-know-us session.
On the 6th of October the KTT online debate on COVID-19, which was organised by our Policy Centre, was an opportunity for you to put a face to the names of all KTT Policy Centres and it was an opportunity for us to present our work and our vision to you. The King’s Think Tank is Europe’s largest student-led policy institute and we pride ourselves on collaborative thinking to find innovative solutions to complex problems. Our seven Policy Centres strive to present expert research on recent issues of global relevance in our blog posts, events, and the Spectrum – our annual publication. One major current challenge for the contemporary world is COVID-19 and it seemed fitting that our first event of the year should analyse the challenges and opportunities of the global pandemic from the perspective of our seven Policy Centres.
The positions and arguments that have been presented by each of our Policy Centres are far too nuanced to be accurately represented here, but we encourage you to watch the full event here by following the link. All in all, however, the debate took us through the discussion themes of lockdown, effects on globalisation, and opportunities of COVID-19. While all agreed that COVID-19 has changed our world, not everyone saw this change as positive. Of course the pandemic is still developing and we all have much to learn about the implications of a virus ravaging our globalised system, but after the debate it seems safe to say that different sectors view the pandemic very differently and identify a variety of factors, ranging from systemic and multilateral, to economic and societal aspects, that might provide an opportunity for change post-COVID.
So all that is left to say at the end is that we hope that our first event gave you a chance to get to know our work and our members. We are so much more than a black-box entity with obscure job titles: we are a community of students like you and your friends! So in the spirit of getting to know us, we go again in the hope that you respond: Hi there, we are Jonas, Mirjam, Ela, Joao, Claudia, Noe, and Virginia, and together we are the Policy Centre for European Affairs — it is a pleasure to meet you!
Jonas is a third year International Relations student with a particular research interest in post-Cold War imaginations and European identity. He is the Director of the Policy Centre for European Affairs this year.