Graham Watson MEP
Liberal Democrat Member of the European Parliament for South West England and Gibraltar
A local champion with an international reputation
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Published on Thursday 8th December 2011
"Building a Liberal Europe- The ALDE Project"- by Graham Watson MEP
In the first decade of the 21st century the Liberal group (known as the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe - ALDE - from 2004) emerged as a powerful third force in the European Parliament, challenging the bi-polar order of Conservatives and Socialists.
Graham Watson, who led the Liberal group from 2002 to 2009, shows how this happened, detailing the Liberal impact on a whole range of policy issues at EU level and the important linkages with Liberal success at national level. He provides a close-up and personal view of momentous political events such as Europe's division over the Iraq War, Nick Clegg's first foray into elected politics and internal Lib Dem battles over South West election campaigns.
Graham concludes that 'the potential for further growth of the European Liberal centre remains greater than at any point in the last 100 years'.
Politics and personalities combine to make this a richly informative and insightful insider's account which will be of interest to all who follow EU affairs and Liberal politics.
'Graham Watson chronicles a fascinating period in the EU's development with the humanity and humour which were a hallmark of his leadership of the EU's Liberal MEPs.'Romano Prodi (President of the European Commission, 1999-2004)
Books and Publications
Graham's Gude to the EU (2012)
A recently published guide that attempts to provide the basics of how the European Union operates, how it raises its budget, the policy areas that the EU works in and how the UK benefits. From European funding projects to the single market, this guide attempts to provide some basic material for anyone wishing to find out more about the European Union, including Graham's ideas on how it could be reformed for the better.
Making the Green Energy Switch at a Time of Crisis
2009: Compiled and Edited by Euan Roddin
Today climate change is better understood and more feared than ever. There is an ever-enlarging consensus about the need to end
our umbilical dependence on the conventional energy sources that are endangering the planet.
Now is the time for ideas and innovation, and Europe has the opportunity to stimulate them.
In this pamphlet the case for new energy sources and technical innovation is made by Members of the European Parliament from across the political spectrum. They are united in their wish to tackle climate change and ensure the long-term sustainability of energy supply in Europe and throughout the world.
Each adds their own ideas and distinctive voice to a policy debate that is at the forefront of public discourse in the early years of the twenty first century.
There are contributions from Dorette Corbey MEP, David Hammerstein MEP, Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP Vittorio Prodi MEP and Graham Watson MEP. There is also a foreword from Graham Watson.
The Lisbon Strategy: Mode d'Emploi
2008: Edited by Christine Gilmore
With less than two years to go before the 2010 target to make Europe the most competitive and innovative knowledge economy in the world, too little has been done to ensure that the Lisbon Strategy makes the transition from theory into practice.
Lack of focus, not to mention appetite for reform, in many Member States over the past five years, means the European Union now has an enormous mountain to climb if it is to generate the long-term, sustainable growth required to compete with emerging economies.
In this pamphlet Members of the European Parliament from across the political spectrum draw from their experience of a wide range of policy areas to show how the Lisbon Strategy can best be harnessed in the time remaining to enable Europe to prosper in a global market, protect its environment, and promote the welfare of its citizens.
There are contributions from Robert Goebbels MEP, Rebecca Harms MEP, Malcolm Harbour MEP, Edit Herczog MEP, Gunnar Hökmark MEP, Bilyana Raeva MEP and Graham Watson MEP. There is also a foreword by Graham Watson.
Making Migration Work for Europe
2008: Edited by Graham Watson MEP.
Migration is one of the greatest challenges facing not only the UK but the European Union as a whole. Graham has launched this new pamphlet entitled 'Making Migration Work for Europe' written together with eight MEPs from across the political spectrum.
Commenting about 'Making Migration Work for Europe', Graham said;
"I am pleased to have worked with this broad spectrum of MEPs from across the political divide to make the case for a radical rethink of Europe's Migration policy. Some steps have been made to fight illegal migration, but we must not turn Europe into a fortress. Only a comprehensive European solution can manage migration successfully. As a South West MEP, I know how important migration is to my constituents. Reports have shown how very hard pressed we would be in the South West without a pool of immigrant labour. "
On his own contribution Graham stated;
"Currently the Commission's half hearted efforts have meant Europe has been unable to effectively manage a migration policy. We must be willing to learn and adopt best practice so as to be successful at managing migration and promoting effective integration between communities. Ultimately we need a bold response to the demographic time bomb facing Europe."
The Case for Global Democracy
2007: Edited by Graham Watson MEP and Christine Gilmore with co-authors Piia-Noora Kauppi MEP, Jo Leinen MEP, Gerard Onesta MEP
Graham's latest publication promotes the case for global democracy through a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly made by four Members of the European Parliament from across the political spectrum. Covering both the necessity for, and specifications of, such a project these essays are a timely contribution to the current debate on ensuring effective global governance.
For a free copy of this publication contact Graham's constituency office at Bagehot's Foundry, Beards Yard, Langport, Somerset TA10 9PS or email using the website.
The Power of Speech
Graham's latest book is a selection of the speeches he has made during his five years as Parliamentary Leader of the EU's Liberal Democrats. With an introduction for each entry, it traces the positions and priorities of Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament and is on sale of just £10 including p&p.
To purchase your copy of Graham's new book, you can order it from Graham's office, using the order form available in the 'Publications' section of Graham's website. Please send a cheque for £10.00 (includes p&p) made payable to:
'Graham Watson MEP' to his office address: Bagehot's Foundry, Beard's Yard, Langport, Somerset,TA10 9PS
Liberalism - Something to Shout About
Beyond incrementalism: Can the Liberal Democrats 'meet the challenge'?
2006: Edited by Graham Watson MEP and Simon Titley
The authors of the seven essays in this book start from the belief that the Liberal Democrats have a rare opportunity in contemporary Britain to gain a handle on the levers of power at Westminster and in Whitehall: but that we are unlikely to realise that opportunity - or to make good use of it if we do - unless we recognise the limits to incrementalism (tactic of gradual seat-by-seat advance), which served the party well in the 1980s and 1990s but has now reached the limits of what it can deliver. If Liberal Democrats are to advance much further we have to raise our game.
At the General Election due in 2007/8/9/10 Britain will need to take a number of strategic, long-term decisions, which ten years of Labour government have ducked. For example, on climate change, pensions, a new social contract. Public opinion must be prepared for them. Are we as Lib Dems going to do it, or do we risk leaving it to David Cameron?
To purchase your copy of Graham's new book, please send a cheque for £6.00 (includes P&P) made payable to 'Graham Watson MEP', to Bagehot Publishing, Bagehot's Foundry, Beard's Yard, Langport, Somerset TA10 9PS.
Liberal Democracy & Globalisation
2005: Edited by Graham Watson MEP & Katharine Durrant
A collection of essays by Members of the European Parliament from 12 different EU Member States. All are members of the Alliance of Liberal and Democrats for Europe, led by Graham Watson MEP. With more MEPs than ever before, Liberals and Democrats hold the balance of power in Brussels and Strasbourg and thus play an important role in shaping EU laws. These essays inform the reader of the values and ideas which inspires Liberal Democrat action in European Affairs.
To purchase your copy of Graham's new book, please send a cheque for £9.50 (includes P&P) made payable to 'Graham Watson MEP', to Bagehot Publishing, Bagehot's Foundry, Beard's Yard, Langport, Somerset TA10 9PS.
EU've Got Mail!
2004: Graham Watson MEP - edited by Sarah Kent
Liberal Letters from the European Parliament. £7.50.
Liberal Language: Speeches and Essays 1998 - 2003
2003: Graham Watson MEP - edited by Sarah Kent
A collection of speeches and essays providing a vivid insight into European Union politics.
Order your copy of this new and fascinating publication at just £9.50 (plus post and packaging).
2001: Edited by Graham Watson MEP and Howard Mollett
2020 Vision is a collection of essays written from different national perspectives about the challenges of governance in a world in which nations are interdependent, yet in which aspects of globalisation are increasingly the focus of public protest.
'The Liberals in the North-South dialogue' (Ed), FNS, Bonn, 1980
No longer in print