Yearly Archive: 2021

The end of the world pre-COVID: what do the 2020 results of the Elcano Global Presence Index tell us?

Today we are launching the 2020 edition of the Elcano Global Presence Index. This 11th edition does not yet reflect the effect of the pandemic, so, in a sense, it can be considered a description of the world before the eruption of the pandemic. A world that had, however, [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Deep tech: the return of the grand projects of bits and atoms

In the last few days two prominent entrepreneurs, Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic and Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and the Blue Origin aerospace business, have boarded their respective companies’ rockets for commercial –or promotional– voyages with private passengers. It is symptomatic of the privatisation of the space race, [...]

What is at stake for Spain with the new EU-US Trade & Technology Council?

In 1966, the Italian Foreign Minister, Amintore Fanfani, called on Washington, DC, to establish a “technological Marshall Plan” among NATO Member states to cooperate in high-tech areas. It did not succeed though. 55 years later –in June 2021–, the European Union and the United States announced the launch of [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega European digital sovereignty: the EU had it, but did not retain it

Let’s go back to the 1990s. It was a time when the EU dominated the mobile phone industry (2G and 3G), had pre-eminent manufacturers of handsets –Nokia was a world leader–, built PCs and accounted for 30% of global manufacturing output of semiconductors, the essential silicon chips. In 2000, [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Does China pose a challenge to our liberal democracies?

The US is embarking upon a strategy of definition against China, based on a broad domestic consensus predating Biden, but that now draws heavily on domestic policy. Beyond this, however, China is the only country with the potential for competing at all levels of power with the US and [...]

Soft power put to the test

Just a few weeks ago, China’s president, Xi Jinping, called for a more “loveable” image for China during the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference which was held at the beginning of June. Xi Jinping aims to revamp its country’s image, and “expand its circle of friends”. Chinese president told [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega New global public goods and evils

Although its origins go back earlier, the idea of global public, or communal, goods has sparked new interest and relevance with the pandemic, especially in the context of vaccines, but also given the new impetus aimed at restoring the environment and securing a fairer global taxation system for large [...]

Open RAN: an opportunity for European digital and like-minded cooperation?

The concept of Open RAN is progressively acquiring greater visibility in the media and the public debate. The concept aims to achieve a more open architecture in the Radio Access Network (RAN), i.e., the segment which connects users and devices to the core part of the telecommunication network –roughly [...]

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