GPI London conducts a Review of European Central Bank

Following its comparative analysis of the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank, published in 2018, fellows at GPI London are responding to Christine Lagarde’s call for submissions to the ECB’s own review that is to be completed end of 2020.

The GPI team have split their efforts into an economic review and a citizens’ review, both of which will be published in May 2020.  The economic review will be sent to the Governing Council of the European Central Banks and the citizens’ review to the European Parliament.

The economic review will examine whether the pre-Euro mandate for the ECB needs to be modified in the light of events and developments over the past 21 years and its present suitability for current geopolitical conditions. The operational performance of the ECB will be examined with reference to the empirical data and various ECB, European Commission, and academic studies. The monetary policy of the ECB and its impacts within the EZ will be assessed and compared with the monetary as well as fiscal policies of other countries, in particular the US.

The ECB states its review will encompass quantitative formulation of price stability, monetary policy toolkit, economic and monetary analyses and communication practices. GPI will study these specifics but in a wider context of macro-economic performance and the institutional constraints acting on the performance of the ECB.

“As our economies are undergoing profound changes, it is the time for a strategy review to ensure we deliver on our mandate in the best interest of Europeans,” said ECB President Christine Lagarde. The citizens’ review will address this aspect arguing that with the transfer of  national central bank sovereignty to the ECB that institution took on a duty of care to all European citizens. The European System of Central Banks is explicitly referred to Article 3 of the European Union. This states: “The Union shall establish an internal market. It shall work for the sustainable development of Europe based on balanced economic growth and price stability, a highly competitive social market economy, aiming at full employment and social progress, and a high level of protection and improvement of the quality of the environment.”

Any review should re-visit this mandate and put forward policy solutions that can meet these obligations under current conditions. The European Parliament needs to hold the ECB and its Governing Council accountable to the welfare of its citizens and be fully informed on a full range of options.

GPI London invites other organisations to work collaboratively in preparing its review. The project can be discussed with Dr Michael Lloyd ( and Professor Sam Whimster who are the team leaders for the two reviews.

About the GPI

The Global Policy Institute is a research institute on international affairs. It is based in the City of London, and draws on both a rich pool of international thinkers, academics as well as policy and business professionals. The Institute gives non-partisan guidance to policymakers and decision takers in business, government, and NGOs.