Master of Public Policy  

Influencing Brussels: The “European Green Deal” in real time

This course introduces students to the theory and practice of influencing public policy, with a focus on the European Union (EU) proposal for a “European Green Deal” to address climate change and sustainable economic growth. European citizens, world leaders, climate scientists and campaigners from Greta Thunberg’s #schoolstrike movement all expect the EU to be a leader taking action against climate change. At the beginning of 2020, the new President of the European Commission tasked her most senior vice president to develop a major new policy proposal "in the first 100 days", to allow EU heads of state and governments to adopt a political commitment to a highly ambitious ‘net-zero’ climate target and a green economic growth plan. This commitment aims to enable EU diplomats to work with other countries to prepare a strong outcome for the next UN climate conference in November 2021 (UNFCCC COP26 in Glasgow). The policy proposal is highly salient for European citizens, not only because it can help set world trends on climate change, but also because doing this will mean major changes in how the European economy develops and in how EU and national money is allocated within the recovery period from the COVID-19 shock. This impacts many diverse interest groups, meaning that there will be winners and losers resulting from a Green Deal – from economic sectors, from different generations and social classes and among EU countries. The course focuses on the Green Deal package, and will use the current 2021 legislative proposals, including those on sector policies and the EU ETS, as case studies.


  • Christine Reh , Dean of Graduate Programmes and Professor of European Politics