Author Archives

Luca Contrino

Originally from Italy, but something of a wanderer, I am currently in the process of completing a Master's in International and European Relations at Linköping University in Sweden. I previously studied Modern Languages and European Studies at the University of Bath in the United Kingdom.
A lover of travel, languages, and cooking amongst other things!
I consider myself European having so far lived in six European countries, and the experience has convinced me of the EU's role as a force for good in the world.

Whatever the election result, reactionaries and extremists are Italy’s big winners

Italy’s election on March 4th will take place in a climate of tension and aggression not seen for decades. The difficulty in efficiently processing migrants recovered in the Mediterranean combined with ongoing economic difficulties for the average citizen despite a tentative macroeconomic recovery, and an ongoing refusal to […]


Russia’s antagonism of Europe is not a strength – it hints at deep internal malaise

Russian involvement in Syria as well as an extensive disinformation apparatus have kept the world’s attention on Russia and projected an image of  its strength, at home and abroad. It has also helped present the country and figures like Vladimir Putin as defenders of traditional Christian/conservative values against a […]


Matteo Salvini – an unimaginative, anti-EU sideman in Europe’s political landscape?

With the election next year in mind, Matteo Salvini has decided to re-brand Italy’s Lega Nord party as simply “Lega”, in a move to broaden its appeal beyond its traditional base in Northern Italy, and push its Eurosceptic and nativist agenda at the national level . This might seem […]


Expanding green transport is the next big European renewable energy challenge

Taken as a unit, the European Union is on course to meet its 2020 goal of 20% overall final energy consumption coming from renewable sources (some member states have already met their individual targets). The European Union’s Joint Research Centre Report on Renewable Energy Deployment in the EU […]


The “New Italians” are finding their voice at a tense moment in the debate on Italian identity

Immigration in Italy is a toxic issue, largely due to the issue of refugees arriving in the country by sea and sometimes by land, the costs of processing them and the (perceived or real) reluctance of other states to contribute to rescue and resettlement efforts. Italy’s notoriously restrictive […]


Could South Tyrol be a model for Catalonia?

After the Spanish government’s response to the Catalan referendum on independence, the debate now turns to what should happen next and how to find a solution that both sides would find acceptable. South Tyrol is a German-speaking province of Northern Italy, and while some tensions persist, has been […]


Greener is stronger: renewable energy and a healthy environment are fundamental to European security

Europe has seen a recent acceleration of transition to renewable energy sources, with the the focus on the environmental benefits of the move away from fossil fuels. But without additional context, this has meant that until recently, lack of economic incentives and individual resources available to make the […]