Apart from a few years in the middle-east, I've lived my whole life in europe; the great majority in britain. I am a european, both from conviction and pragmatism. Europe, of which the uk remains such an important part, is helping forge a new way forward for the world. It is a lighthouse of how old enemies can become not just new allies, but so closely bound and integrated that their future prosperity depends on them hanging ever closer together. At its best, europe brings real benefits from bigger and freer flowing markets, economies of scale, the circulation of best practice and safety in numbers. I have written a lot about europe, mainly in my guise of new europe, and you can read it all here. Watch the clip, by oscar-winning producer alice doyard

powerless europe: why is the euro area still a political dwarf ? (September 2006)

[Lorenzo Bini Smaghi] Unified European representation can be achieved only in exchange for the Member States' own seats. Otherwise, the number of European representatives would unacceptably increase. As the Member States tend to believe their participation in international institutions and fora such as the IMF and G7 provides them with prestige, they tend to oppose unified European representation...