Top 10 European affairs podcasts

Following the big stories that shape the old continent can be tricky – but a host of brilliant podcasts have evolved to make deciphering complex European issues as easy as tuning in

Skyline of Madrid with Metropolis Building and Gra

EU Confidential 

The Rolls-Royce of European news podcasts, EU Confidential is Politico EU’s flagship podcast. For those nostalgic for
the news bulletin of old, this weekly podcast will keep you up to speed with all the breaking developments in European affairs. Building on Politico EU’s well-established credentials and expertise, the podcast seamlessly merges analysis and interviews. If you’re serious about European politics, this 30-minute weekly show should be a staple of your podcast feed.

Inside Europe

A veteran of the European podcast landscape, Deutsche Welle’s Inside Europe has covered European affairs every week for more than a decade. Expertly produced, Inside Europe is an excellent, hour-long weekly review that manages to strike a balance between accessibility and depth, thanks to a team of seasoned correspondents spread across Europe. It offers journalistic excellence accompanied by groovy music.

Talking Europe 

France 24’s English weekly television programme in a podcast format, Talking Europe adds a touch of Frenchness to the European podcast landscape. Talking Europe hosts in-depth interviews with leading European political figures on the sujet du jour but also spirited debates, somewhat of a rarity in the podcast landscape. While you can also watch the videos online, the audio format is specially adjusted for podcast listeners.

The Sound of Economics 

One for the economic nerds, The Sound of Economics is the Bruegel Institute’s podcast. An essential listen for those who want a better grasp on European economic trends, The Sound of Economics can rely on Bruegel’s seasoned experts as well as high-quality external guests. Without being too wonky, the podcast does not shy away from covering both economic theory and the weeds of economic policy to help listeners navigate Europe’s economic landscape.

EU Scream 

While many podcasts on European affairs feel the need to aim for neutrality, EU Scream is a passionately pro-European voice and an unabashedly progressive podcast, founded as a response to the rise of populist parties across Europe. An energetic and well-oiled machine, EU Scream interviews leading political and intellectual figures to break down the challenges that the EU faces. EU Scream has also kicked off a book club series in which it discusses some of
the most insightful books about the EU with their authors.

The Europeans 

Another edgy podcast on European affairs but with the extra twist of covering not only political developments and also cultural events. The Europeans are as likely to break down Brexit-related news as they are to talk about the Eurovision Song Contest or the newest museum exhibits
in Amsterdam and Paris. Co-produced by
a British AFP journalist and an Amsterdam-based opera singer, The Europeans is a fresh take on European affairs with a clear progressive lens.

The Europe Desk 

Run by BMW Center for German and European Studies at Georgetown University, The Europe Desk is the only podcast on that list based outside of the US that gives a transatlantic flavour to its analysis of European affairs. Through interviews with leading experts and policy figures, The Europe Desk covers the most crucial EU-related topics every week.

The CER podcast 

The Centre for European Reform (CER) has established itself as one of the leading think tanks on the EU, a distinguished status well reflected in its flagship podcast. A pro-EU voice, but not an uncritical one, the podcast can rely on its CER in-house experts to breakdown one major European issue – ranging rom Brexit to migration – each week. The CER also launched a new podcast subseries, Ask CER, where listeners can send in their questions and share some thoughts for the podcast’s hosts and relevant CER experts to break down on air. Podcast 

A fantastic podcast for those who want to follow the innovative European tech landscape. Tech.Eu is an essential publication on tech and startup-related news, and their weekly podcasts provide plenty of insights and information on those topics as well as fascinating conversations with some of the leading figures in the European tech ecosystem. A welcome and productive addition if politics-focused podcasts start clogging your feed. 

Uncommon Decency

And finally… to my own podcast. What makes us Europeans? At its heart, Uncommon Decency seeks to cover what strings together the inhabitants of this small peninsula we call Europe. Its hosts cover in depth both current events and the big debates that shape our old continent by interviewing historians, economists, politicians and even fiction writers. This podcast is an essential listen for those who want to dig deeper into Europe’s intellectual landscape while receiving regular news coverage of European affairs. 

François Valentin is is co-host of the Uncommon Decency podcast

17th February 2022