Critics of the European Political Community (EPC) argue that it suffers from a lack of institutional depth that limits its potential impact. The format’s precise role also remains unclear, as does the value it adds to existing institutions such as the European Union, NATO, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the Council of Europe.
But, in confronting the security challenges Europe faces today, these institutionalised formats have their own limitations. For instance, NATO and the EU invite and distinguish between members and partners, narrowing the range of perspectives present – and the OSCE’s very existence is under threat due to its requirement for consensus decision-making. Security is only one basket of the EPC, but it is one in which the format could help fill some of these gaps and complement more institutionalised forums.