March 1, 2016

The European Union: Domestic and International Challenges

Geoffrey Harris
Deputy Head of the European Parliament Liaison Office

Geoffrey Harris is currently the Deputy Head of the European Parliament Liaison Office with the US Congress. This office is charged with the development of relations between the European Parliament and the US Congress and works to raise the Parliament´s profile in the United States. He took up this position in July 2012, two years after this office (EPLO) was established.

He was until 2012 the Head of the Human Rights Unit within the Secretariat General of the European Parliament (Directorate General for external policies DGEXPO). This unit provides the back-up for the EP sub-committee, a parliamentary body working in the framework of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament. The unit also provided back-up for all initiatives and aspects of the work of the institution concerning human rights (the President, the Development and External Trade committees and the Inter-parliamentary delegations, as well as the Annual Sakharov Prize ward).

From 1976-1989 he was an official of the (then) largest Group in the EP, the Socialist Group and from 1989 – 1992 he was the diplomatic adviser to the President of Parliament. From 1992-2004 he was the EP official charged with the organization of inter-parliamentary relations with all the candidate countries (Joint Parliamentary Committees) and with other countries in Europe but outside the EU. This included Russia, the Western Balkans, South Caucasus as well as Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus.

Mr . Harris is a regular lecturer and participant in academic conferences and is the author of one book , published by Columbia U.P. in 1993 “The Dark Side of Europe – the extreme right in Europe today.”