Global Europe 2050

The global Europe 2050 foresight report presents and quantifies three scenarios that identify the main pathways Europe could follow in the coming decades: the nobody cares scenario where Europe is in a "muddling through" process; the EU under threat where Europe is faced by an economic decline and protectionist reactions; the European renaissance where the EU continues to enlarge and become stronger with more efficient innovation system.

The European Commission asked twenty five leading analysts to look into the future and workthrough a number of scenarios to see where the EU might be in 2050. Their work, presented in this Global Europe 2050 report, analyses three key scenarios which describe different but nonetheless possible pathways that Europe could choose to follow over the decades to come.

The first scenario is what if Nobody cares and Europe just muddles along with no clear vision or direction. In this scenario the analysis shows that economic growth will remain stubbornly lower than in the US and China, and that we will fail to exploit our potential for innovation and will, in consequence, lose our position in terms of global competitiveness to other regions in the world. At the other extreme, the EU under threat scenario paints a bleak picture of global economic decline followed by reactionary protectionist measures. The EU will see its share of world GDP fall by almost a half by 2050. Frequent food and oil crises will occur. EU Member States will become more inward-looking leading to inefficient fragmentation of effort that will touch every sector especially research – so vital for our future prosperity. Fortunately, the third scenario, which the experts call the European Renaissance, describes a much more attractive pathway. The EU continues to enlarge and become stronger. It consolidates its political, fiscal and military integration.

Document type
  • Report


Publication Year


European Commission, Directorate - General for Research and Innovation
Geographical focus
  • Europe
  • International; Other
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Cross-thematic/Interdisciplinary

Entry created by Danaja Lorencic on November 7, 2012
Modified on November 7, 2012