Keynote Speaker Felipe González
Europe is in crisis and it needs hope and the pragmatism of ideas to begin a promising future.
Felipe González, former Spanish Prime Minister. During his service, he carried out enormous reforms and was a protagonist for intensifying relations with the EU.
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We introduce you Felipe González, the Spanish Prime Minister, who was in power for the longest time during democracy. He was one of the greatest pioneers in the improvement of relations between Europe and Latin America and has always worked to promote ties between the two regions.
Felipe González – Talking Topics
Felipe González is more than pleased to give you a talk on topics of his presidency, Relations with Europe and the challenges of the proper education system.
Felipe González’s career
In addition to consulting and regularly working with journalists, he is Chairman of the Commission for Global Progress of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE). PSOE works to stimulate discussion and builds a new platform of ideas and suggestions for political action that addresses current challenges and obstacles.
Relations with the EU
In 2007, the Council of Ministers elected him Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary for the celebration of the bicentennial of American independence which was established in 2010. Also in 2007, at a meeting of the European Council, the Heads of State and Government of the European Union elected him as Chairman of the Reflection Group on the Future of Europe. It was the Committee of Wise Men, which hat one purpose and was terminated after the presentation of its report.
Felipe González is also a member of the European Steering Committee Our Europe, the InterAction Council, the International Council of the Shimon Peres Centre for Peace, the Club of Madrid and the Círculo de Montevideo.
The way to the Prime Minister of Spain
After studying law, economics and industrial relations, he entered the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party in 1963, forced into secrecy by the Franco regime. Elected Secretary General in 1974, he worked to establish and strengthen the ideology and principles of the party. Felipe González has made a significant contribution to political change in Spain. The stable union of his party in the 1980s and his undeniable talent qualified his party to win an absolute majority in 1982.
Felipe González served as Prime Minister of Spain for fourteen years. During his governance, he made enormous reforms: free public education for all up to the age of 16, more possibilities for access to university and a general social security system. He also completed a major industrial restructuring and army reform process, professionalizing its members. At the international level, Spain’s accession to the European Union in 1986 and the relations mentioned above with Latin America have been the cornerstones of its policy.
Felipe González – His vision of Europe
What is Europe? What do we expect from Europe? In which direction should institutions and citizens move to be well positioned in a globalized and continually changing world? The old continent, the European Union, faces several challenges in these times of uncertainty and crisis, and its future will depend on how well or poorly they are treated.
Challenges of the EU
These include the consolidation of great leadership and the effective functioning of institutions with real power, the internal coherence of their residents and the integration of immigrants, internal security and the creation of a common international approach to conflict resolution. But not only that. European Union needs to focus on relations with other regions such as Latin America and the Mediterranean countries, reactions to future challenges such as energy supply, technological development, and education policy and the balance between economic, social and cultural improvement. Europe is in crisis, and the courage of confidence and pragmatism of concepts are needed to face a hopeful future.
Felipe González’s beliefs
Felipe González, a committed pro-European, observer and opinion leader in the process of European integration, is avoiding clichés and responding directly to the controversies, past, present and future of the dream called Europe, which has not yet been fully realized.
Honors and Awards
His political activity has been recognized on numerous occasions. For his contribution to European unity, he has received the prestigious Charlemagne Prize, the Carlos V 2000 Prize, granted by the European Academy of Yuste in Spain. The Grand Golden Cross of Merit of the Republic of Austria, the Collar of the Order of Isabella la Católica, and the Order of the Quetzal from Commander of the Republic of Guatemala and many other prizes and distinctions. He also received honorary doctorates from the Universities of Lovaina and Toulouse.
Felipe González’s publications – He has written many books such as:
– Mi Idea de Europa, Un Estilo ético (My idea of Europe: an ethical approach) with Víctor Márquez Revirieg
– El futuro no es lo que era (The future is no longer what it was) with Juan Luis Cebrián.
He also published the essays:
El socialismo and Memorias del futuro (Socialism and Memories of the Future).