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March 7, 2014

Williamsburg-CSIS Global Forum explores the future of the European Union: “A Crisis and a Crossroads: A Dis-United or United States of Europe?”

The second Williamsburg-CSIS Forum explores current challenges facing Europe in regard to political union, identity, leadership, economic growth, the debt crisis and foreign policy.

The Forum, “A Crisis and a Crossroads: A Dis-United or United States of Europe?,” is the outcome of a partnership between the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., and the Reves Center at the College of William and Mary, and opens on Monday, March 17 in Williamsburg.

The Forum will be attended by a wide range of European participants – including politicians, diplomats, business leaders, academics, economists and media representatives – as well as U.S. authorities on Europe. To encourage a free and open exchange of views off the record, a number of discussions will be conducted in private, but there are two opportunities for the public to participate in the conference:

• The first public session is a keynote address by U.S. Supreme Court justice Anthony Kennedy entitled “How Courts Define a Union: The Role of the Judiciary in Shaping the United States and the Future of the European Union” at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 18. The session is moderated by John Bellinger III, a former legal adviser for the U.S. Dept. of State and the National Security Council.

• The second is a public discussion at 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 18. New York Times columnist Roger Cohen moderates “The Great European Debate: A United States of Europe?” The panelist for the affirmative is Jörg Asmussen, Germany’s deputy minister of labor. The opposition panelist is Liam Fox, member of the United Kingdom’s House of Commons and former secretary of state for defense.

Both public forums will take place in the Colony Room of the Williamsburg Lodge, 310 S. England St. Seating is limited, and a free reservation is required by calling 1-800-447-8679. The audience will have the opportunity to submit written questions to the panelists.

Live Streaming and Video: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation will also live stream Tuesday afternoon’s public session. The website, will offer opportunities for the public to discuss and comment on the conference themes. The content will also be available on the website of the Center for Strategic and International Studies

Context: The Global Forum builds on the unique assets of the partners with the objective of assisting countries and regions advance their visions of political stability and economic development, and familiarizing experts with the latest thinking on these issues.

A significant goal of Colonial Williamsburg is to assess whether lessons learned from past efforts to develop stable political cultures and institutions, such as the American Revolution and its aftermath, are helpful in considering contemporary political and economic challenges around the world. The Global Forum constitutes an important element of the role as a national and international center for history and citizenship.

“We believe our own history and the principles of citizenship and self-government can provide a valuable starting point for discussions about the establishment of democratic institutions and political and economic development today,” said Colin G. Campbell, president and CEO of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

CSIS, one of America’s leading think tanks, will contribute its bipartisan expertise in international and security issues, and its worldwide contacts and experience. Conference segments held at CSIS headquarters in Washington later in the week will focus more specifically on immediate policy challenges.

The Reves Center for International Studies at the College of William and Mary was established in 1989 and promotes the internationalization of learning, teaching, and research and community involvement at the university.

Leading the Global Forum are James Horn, vice president of research and historical interpretation at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, Reginald Dale, director of the Williamsburg-CSIS Forum at CSIS, and Stephen E. Hanson, vice provost for international affairs and director of the Wendy and Emery Reves Center for International Studies at the College of William and Mary.

The Forum is made possible by generous support from Ferguson Enterprises Inc., Pamela and Peter Flaherty of New York, N.Y., Anita and Jim Timmons of Sea Island, Ga., and Linda and Don Baker of Williamsburg.

Media Contact:
Jim Bradley