After China, Europe became the epicenter of the COVID-19 crisis. Initial responses from European Union member states were disjointed, but in recent weeks, the EU has demonstrated solidarity by stepping up efforts to support the members most affected and coordinate responses. EU officials, including President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, have responded directly to disinformation spread by foreign states, which have sought to exploit the crisis to undermine European cohesion. Earlier this month, the European Commission launched a new economic initiative to support the hardest-hit states (Italy, Spain, France, and others) to mitigate the financial fallout. For Europe – a continent more economically, politically, and culturally integrated than any other – working together is a matter of survival. How Europe responds today will determine the future unity of the European project and the European way of life.

This virtual fireside chat with Vice President Margaritis Schinas, European Commissioner for Promoting our European Way of Life, examined the EU’s response to COVID-19  and the long-term implications of the crisis on European identity and values.

ModeratorDr. Alina Polyakova, President and CEO, CEPA

SpeakerMargaritis Schinas, Vice President for Promoting our European Way of Life, European Commission

Media Contact: Christina Brown at or (202) 601-4148.

Photo: "European Commission Flags" from LIBER Europe under CC 2.0 via Flickr.

Dr. Alina Polyakova