Press release

French Elections: The Big Takeaways from Central Europe


On the 24th of April, the French will make a decisive choice between the centrist pro-European status quo and the extreme right nativist Euroskeptic and disruptive position. On top of France's importance for Europe, the extremely narrow race between two totally opposite candidates has focused attention even more on the elections from all over Europe, including the Centre and East.

With the war raging in the East, Central and Eastern European voices on these crucial elections has never been more important than now. What is their take on the French Elections? What does a possible second term of Macron mean? Do they see any positive future prospects from a possible first Le Pen term? In a debate, GLOBSEC Brussels welcomes top policy experts from Central and Eastern Europe to voice their takeaways on the French elections. Expect a lively debate that answers questions important for the future of the European security order, European integration and the topic of ‘illiberal democracies’.


  • Toomas Hendrik Ilves

Former President Estonia

Toomas Hendrik Ilves is an Estonian politician, diplomat and journalist who served as the fourth President of Estonia from 2006 until 2016, Minister of Foreign Affairs and MEP.

  • Jakub Wiśniewski

PhD, Secretary of the Board and Special Advisor to President at GLOBSEC.

Jakub is former Polish Ambassador to the OECD (2014-2016) and Director of the Department of Foreign Policy Strategy at the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2010-2014). He is the author of a book, several publications and articles on the EU, including social policy, migration policy and EU foreign and security policy. In the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland, he was in charge of drafting “Polish Foreign Policy Priorities 2012-2016” and acted as a speechwriter for former Minister of Foreign Affairs Radek Sikorski.

  • Péter Krekó

Executive director of Political Capital Institute in Budapest

Péter Krekó is a social psychologist and political scientist. He is the executive director of Political Capital since 2011. Currently he is a Europe’s Futures Visiting Fellow of the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM) and Erste Foundation, and an non-resident Associate Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University SAIS Bologna Institute of Policy Research.

  • Veronika Víchová

Deputy Director for Analysis and Head of the Kremlin Watch Program at the European Values Center for Security Policy.

Veronika Víchová graduated from the Masaryk University in Brno. She co-authored a study on how Kremlin propaganda portrays European leaders which was published by The Atlantic Council and an Overview of countermeasures by the EU28 to the Kremlin´s influence operations. She compiles the Kremlin Watch Briefing, a weekly newsletter on disinformation and influence operations for more than 7.000 European experts, journalists and officials

Agenda: (25/04/2022) 17h30-18h30 CET

  • 17h30-17h35: Welcome and moderation by Roland Freudenstein, Vice-President of GLOBSEC and Head of office, GLOBSEC Brussels (5 minutes)
  • 17h35-18h05: Moderated discussion (30 min)
  • 18h05-18h25: Q&A with the audience (20 min)
  • 18h25-18h30: Summary and closure (5 minutes)

Zoom link to register :