Fiscal Futures in Post-Pandemic Europe

A Return to “Normal”?

The pandemic and the associated lockdowns produced the deepest and most disruptive downturn in the EU since World War II. This prompted the Council to lift all constraints on debt and deficits embedded in the European fiscal framework. Now that a post-pandemic Europe is on the rise, we explore what should be her fiscal future: a return to “normal” or a leap to something new?

The European fiscal framework has been set up to monitor and coordinate fiscal policies in the pursuit of sustainable public finances and macroeconomic stability in the Union. Returning to pre-corona business-as-usual could take several years – depending on how long the disruptions last and what scars they will leave. Moreover, the EU could grasp this moment as a unique opportunity to address some of the fiscal framework’s long-standing weaknesses.

Against this backdrop, this online roundtable will feature a discussion between Roel Beetsma (Amsterdam School of Economics, Member of the European Fiscal Board), Marco Buti (Head of Cabinet, European Commission) and Jean Pisani-Ferry (Bruegel, EUI, Peterson Institute), followed by an open discussion with the audience. The roundtable will be moderated by Paul van den Noord (ASE and ACES).

About the speakers

Paul van den Noord (moderator) is an Affiliate Member of the Amsterdam School of Economics (University of Amsterdam) and team leader at ACES. He spent most of his career at the OECD in Paris, from 2010 to 2013 as Counsellor to the Chief Economist, following a secondment to the European Commission in Brussels from 2007 to 2010. In 2013 Paul joined a financial institution in London and Geneva and returned to his alma mater in 2018. He has held positions as visiting professor at the College of Europe in Bruges and associate fellow at Chatham House and published extensively in the areas of fiscal policy, the European monetary union and the economics of housing. 

Marco Buti is the Chief of Staff of the Commissioner for the economy, Paolo Gentiloni, and was Director-General for Economic and Financial Affairs at the European Commission between 2008 and 2019. He has been the Commission Finance Deputy at G7 and G20. A graduate of the universities of Florence and Oxford, he has been visiting professor at various universities in Europe. He has published extensively on Economic and Monetary Union, the political economy of European integration, macroeconomic policies, welfare state reforms and global governance. His new book that revisits his contributions to the policy elaborations in Europe over the past decade will be published in October 2021.

Jean Pisani-Ferry holds the Tommaso Padoa Schioppa chair of the European University Institute. He is a Senior Fellow at Bruegel, the European think tank, and a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute (Washington DC). He is also a professor of economics with Sciences Po (Paris). He sits on the supervisory board of the French Caisse des Dépôts and serves as non-executive chair of I4CE, the French institute for climate economics. Pisani-Ferry served from 2013 to 2016 as Commissioner-General of France Stratégie, the ideas lab of the French government. In 2017, he contributed to Emmanuel Macron’s presidential bid as the Director of programme and ideas of his campaign. His publications include numerous books and articles on economic policy and European policy issues. He has also been an active contributor to public debates with regular columns in Le Monde and for Project Syndicate.


Roel Beetsma is professor of Macroeconomics and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business of the University of Amsterdam. His other affiliations include fellowships of CEPR and CESifo. He has held visiting positions at DELTA (Paris), the University of British Columbia (Vancouver), the University of California in Berkeley and the EUI Florence. He has been a consultant for various international policy institutions. Further, he is a member of the European Fiscal Board, the Supervisory Board of the pension fund of the Dutch retail sector and the Supervisory Board of a.s.r. Vermogensbeheer. He was a member of a government commission on second-pillar pensions. His research has been widely published in such journals as the American Economic Review, the Journal of Economic Literature and the Economic Journal.

Further reading

Pour une refonte du cadre budgétaire européen / Reforming the European fiscal framework (note CAE avec Philippe Martin et Xavier Ragot, 14 avril). VoxEU post, 26 May

Beetsma, R. (Author), Codogno, L. (Author), & van den Noord, P. (Author). (2020). Next Generation EU: Europe needs pan-European investment. Web publication/site,[details]

Codogno, L. (Author), & van den Noord, P. (Author). (2020). Assessing Next Generation EU. Web publication/site, EUROPP – European Politics and Policy.[details]

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