Inside the Summer 2008 EUSA Review:
EUSA Review Forum: Europe's Evolving Framework for External Action
- Editor's Introduction - Craig Parsons
- Foreign, Security and Defence Policy and the Lisbon Treaty: Significant or Cosmetic Reforms? - Richard G. Whitman
- European Defense Policy and International Relations Theory - Frédéric Mérand
- Foreign Policy and Security in Early European Integration: A Survey of Recent Work - N. Piers Ludlow
- EUSA EU Public Opinion and Participation Interest Section Essay
- Who Are "The Europeans"? - David Michael Green
- EUSA EU as a Global Actor Interest Section Essay
- Interest Section Sponsors Symposium on Transatlantic Relations with EU Ambassador John Bruton - Stephanie Anderson
- EUSA EU Public Policy Interest Section Essay
- Food Security and the Future of CAP Reform - Wyn Grant
- Book Reviews
- EUSA Call for Papers and Panels
- EUSA Call for Teaching Workshops
- How to Support the EUSA
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EUSA Review Forum: Europe's Evolving Framework for External Action
Ever since it became clear that the EU was going to pull off its ambitious single-currency deal, in the late 1990s, EU observers have seen foreign and security policy as the most promising realm for the Union's next "big idea." Despite the longstanding wisdom of the "Monnet method"—that integration advances best when it steers clear of "high politics"—both European elites and cross-national public opinion support European steps in foreign and security policy as much or more than in any other area. But big ideas about the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) have had a very mixed experience in recent years. On the one hand, the widespread European rejection of the Bush administration's policies (majoritarian even in the countries whose governments decided, often for very idiosyncratic reasons, to join the "coalition of the willing" in Iraq) seemed to set ever more fertile ground for new EU steps. Moreover, considerable military integration has taken place under the political radar, further laying the foundations for EU action. On the other hand, the governments seem little closer to building on these foundations at a political level. Not only did they fragment over Iraq, they disagreed over recognition of Kosovo—giving the appearance of little progress since similar fights in the early 1990s around the first Gulf War and recognition of Croatia and Slovenia. Various proposals to strengthen the CFSP and ESDP did become the most prominent policy-related contents of the EU Constitutional Treaty, but they were caught up in the political maelstrom around that initiative. The CFSP/ESDP elements were salvaged from the Constitution's wreckage to become key components of the Lisbon Treaty, and most observers expect they will somehow be salvaged from the Irish rejection of Lisbon as well. Still, if broad foundations and some elite optimism for EU foreign and security policy have survived these years, proponents of a strong EU role in this realm may well have the impression of a lost decade. Even those with a more positive reading must admit it has been very hard to track the prospects for the CFSP and ESDP in the early 21st century.
Our three essays will help readers begin to sort it out. Richard Whitman (co-chair of the EUSA's "EU as a Global Actor" interest section) offers a clear exposition of some of the nuts and bolts of CFSP change in the Lisbon Treaty. These were both the main CFSP-related elements of the Constitutional Treaty and, as he observes, are still likely to be implemented in some form eventually. Frédéric Merand considers the broader context of military and security integration across the member-states, and relates ongoing developments therein to the broader context of political-science theory as well. Historian Piers Ludlow provides a different kind of context, surveying the recent literature on security and military issues in the early decades of the EU project. Whether taken together or read separately, they provide students and experts alike with useful points of departure to untangle the complexities of Europe's evolving framework for external action.
Craig Parsons, EUSA Review Editor
Foreign, Security and Defence Policy and the Lisbon Treaty: Significant or Cosmetic Reforms?
Richard G. Whitman
The European Union's Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), launched by the Maastricht Treaty in 1993, has now been in operation for almost a decade and a half. During that time the CFSP has often been subject to criticism for its ineffectiveness. To address these perceived shortcomings, modifications to the policy were introduced under the treaties of Amsterdam and Nice. The Lisbon Treaty (LT) follows this past trend by introducing a further set of reforms to the EU's arrangements for foreign policy decision-making and implementation. This article outlines these changes and highlights areas of substantive reform.
As of mid-June 2008, when an Irish referendum rejected the LT, these CFSP provisions are in an uncertain state—but they are also back in the headlines. The treaty's foreign policy provisions were a key issue in the Irish referendum debate. That fact itself was not a huge surprise. Indeed, with an eye to potential ratification difficulties, two declarations (30 & 31) had been attached to the Treaty to provide political cover for governments that wished to convey the impression that nothing in the Treaty hindered their existing ability to define or implement national foreign policy. Clearly, these were insufficient to persuade Irish voters that Irish neutrality was not under threat. Despite Irish public anxieties and despite the fact that the CFSP and ESDP provisions account for a substantial proportion of the LT, however, its foreign, security and defence policy provisions are not a dramatic departure from past practice.
Remodeling the Wider Foreign Policy. The LT is a set of amendments to the Treaty establishing the European Communities, renamed the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), and The Treaty on European Union (TEU). A substantial proportion of these changes deal with the CFSP and ESDP provisions (25 of the 62 amendments).
Under the LT, the EU's panoply of foreign policy is "rebranded" under the new heading of "External Action" replacing the old Title V of the TEU with two new chapters. The first of these chapters covers "General Provisions on the Union's External Action" (and contains two new articles 10a and 10b that draw some wording from the old TEU art. 11). This chapter provides an entirely new set of principles and general objectives for the wider External Action area and understood as covering the CFSP/ESDP. In addition, it creates a new part V of the TFEU entitled "External Action by the Union" (which draws together the old EC Treaty provisions covering the Common Commercial Policy, Cooperation with third countries and humanitarian aid, restrictive measures, international agreements, relations with international organisations and third countries and Union delegations and the solidarity clause) as well as "external aspects of its other policy areas." The second of the two new chapters contains the "specific provisions on the common foreign and security policy." The new CFSP chapter, running from articles 10c-31 (as opposed to 11-28 for the existing TEU) is also divided into two sections: "Common Provisions" and "Provisions on the Common Security and Defence Policy" (CSDP).
As a consequence of the division, moving, and reordering of treaty articles, the CFSP/ESDP provisions are not only greatly expanded, but also more separated out. For example, provisions dealing with expenditure matters are moved into the first chapter of the Treaty. Those dealing with enhanced cooperation are also removed (and now covered by a new Art. 10 for the TEU that covers enhanced cooperation across all the Union's policy areas). Provisions covering agreements with third parties and international organizations are also greatly streamlined (Art. 22).
Changes to Decision-making. A second set of changes to the TEU by the LT are those amendments that have consequences for the decision-making and implementation of the CFSP/ESDP.
Remaining distinctive. Although there are changes to arrangements for the decision-making and implementation, the underlying principle of a distinctive decision-making regime for the policy area is retained. The CFSP/CSDP remains a distinctive "pillar" in that the roles of the Commission, European Court of Justice and European Parliament are very heavily circumscribed (and explicitly indicated in a revised art. 11 and in a new art. 240a of TFEU explicitly spelling out that the ECJ has no jurisdiction over the CFSP provisions). Most of the existing references to the Commission are removed and Commission initiatives on CFSP matters are to be directed through the High Representative (art.16; see below for more on the "HR" office). The European Parliament is also enjoined to increase its annual debate on the CFSP to twice per annum and to expand this debate to encompass the CSDP (art. 21).
Seeking a common approach. There is, however, a substantively new article (Art. 17a) making it incumbent on member states to seek a "common approach" on matters of foreign and security policy and to be pursued by member states through their diplomatic representation in third countries and in international organizations. For example, article 19 requires EU members with seats on the UN Security Council to use the HR to represent collective policy where the Union has defined a position. It also places greater obligations on Member States to ensure that any policies that may be pursued and "affect the Union's interests" require consultation either in the European Council or Council and member states are required to show mutual solidarity. This article may be a "paper tiger" as no provision exists to formally sanction non-complying member-states.
Limited revisions to procedures of decision making. Unanimity remains the norm in decision-making except where otherwise explicitly provided for (art. 17.2), and except for one new addition: where the Council is adopting a decision defining a Union action or position, on the basis of a proposal "which the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy has presented following a specific request to him or her from the European Council, made on its own initiative or that of the High Representative," the member-states may take decisions by a qualified majority. The provision that previously allowed for majority voting in the implementation of Common Strategies is retained in a revised form (to cover the replacement arrangement noted above) and by still permitting implementation of actions or provisions by voting. There is also now a provision allowing the European Council to adopt (unanimously) a decision allowing for the extension of areas covered by majority voting.
Constructive abstention is retained in Art. 17, but with the change that the existing blocking minority of one third of member-states now also needs to comprise at least one third of the population of the Union. The "Emergency Brake" is also retained for member-states opposed to the move to a decision to be taken on the basis of a majority vote. The HR is given the role to seek a solution for the state concerned before the issue would be referred to the European Council.
The existing institutional hierarchy of the CFSP is retained with the European Council (unanimously) setting broad objectives. The change to the implementation is that the HR is now given a much more prominent role. Common Strategies (and which, in recent years, have become a redundant device) have been removed from the Treaty. The European Council does, however, still retain the role to take formal "decisions" to "identify the strategic interests and objectives of the Union" (Art. 10b and Art. 13).
Joint Actions and Common Positions are reworked within the LT and with the reference now to adopt "decisions" taken to facilitate "actions" to be undertaken and "positions" to be held by the EU and its member-states (Art.s 12, 14, 15).
High Representative. The most significant set of changes to decision-making concern the revamped role of the High Representative. The "new" High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy has already attracted attention as the post-holder will also simultaneously "double-hat" as a Vice-President of the Commission (Art. 9e). The High Representative will be a personification (another personification will be discussed below), and the animus, of the new gathering-together of all aspects of External Action, formally responsible for its consistency across the Treaties and institutions (Art. 9e(4)) and clearly key to achieving the ambition of greater synergy across all aspects of External Action. The HR is appointed by the European Council (under majority voting provisions) for the same five year term as the Commission and subject to the European Parliament vote of consent on the incoming college of Commissioners. The HR will replace the Presidency as the key animating force of the CFSP (Art. 16). Consequently a number of changes to the TEU concerns the powers and responsibilities of the High Representative and place the post holder at the centre of coordinating (including within international organizations and conferences (Art. 19), directing and implementing the CFSP. A new article (13b) sets out strengthened responsibilities and powers for the HR, which include chairing the (new) Foreign Affairs Council (and nominating the chair of the PSC [WHAT IS THIS?] under Declaration 3 of the LT), representing the Union with third parties and within international organizations and conferences and providing for support through the new European External Action Service (EEAS; of which more below). The HR also takes on the responsibility (previously exercised by the Council) for proposing and managing Special Representatives (Art. 18), the facility to task the PSC with work (Art. 23) and replacing the Presidency in representing the CFSP to the European Parliament (Art. 21).
External Action Service and Union delegations. One of the most eye-catching innovations of the LT is the introduction of the European External Action Service (EEAS) tasked with assisting the HR (Art. 13(3)). The EEAS is intended as the "28th" diplomatic service of the EU and, under the LT provisions, intended to be staffed by officials from the General Secretariat of the Council, the Commission and staff seconded from the diplomatic services of the member-states. The exact organization and modus operandi of EEAS is to be determined by the Council acting on the basis of a proposal from the HR and after there has been consultation of the European Parliament and "the consent" of the Commission. Preparatory work on the EEAS has already commenced under the Slovenian Presidency. The current European Commission delegations in third countries and international organizations are to be re-titled Union delegations and placed under the authority of the HR (TFEU art. 188q), but explicit provision is not made for them to become a part of the EEAS.
New provisions on financing. In addition to the existing provisions for charging administrative and operating expenditure to the Union budget, the LT introduces new provisions covering circumstances in which the EU may wish to have rapid access to the Union budget, in particular for matters covered by ESDP art.s 27(1) and 28), and, if not charged to the Union budget, then chargeable to a start-up fund to be financed by the member-states. The arrangements to govern both of these circumstances are to be determined by the Council in due course (Art. 26(3)) and on the basis of a proposal from the HR.
Other provisions impacting on the CFSP. Other changes introduced that have implications for foreign policy but not contained within the CFSP/CSDP sections of LT, include the grant of legal personality to the EU (art. 32 revised TEU—and all references to the revised TEU unless otherwise stated) and the creation of the position of President of the European Council. The latter only appears once in the CFSP chapter (art 13) on the basis that, "If international developments so require, the President of the European Council shall convene an extraordinary meeting of the European Council in order to define the strategic lines of the Union"s policy in the face of such developments." Art. 9b that provides for the creation of the President of the European Council states:
The President of the European Council shall, at his or her level and in that capacity, ensure the external representation of the Union on issues concerning its common foreign and security policy, without prejudice to the powers of the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (Art. 9b(6)).
Clearly the degree of working harmony (or prejudice) established in the relationship between the first incumbent President and the HR will be of importance and much may depend on the personality of the two post-holders and the successful implementation of the LT amendments in general will be highly dependent on the willingness of the new HR to utilize their powers.
Whether the member-states will be able to realize their ambition for the ratification of the LT to be complete for entry into force on 1st January 2009 is now highly questionable. However, that the member-states preserved the foreign policy provisions of the Constitutional Treaty almost intact in the LT provides a clear indication that these reforms are highly unlikely to be dropped whatever agreement is reached with the Irish Republic.
Richard G. Whitman is Professor of Politics at the University of Bath
European Defense Policy and International Relations Theory
The European security and defense policy (ESDP) is one of those topics that makes you wonder whether too many academics are studying too few actors who have too little money. After all, we are talking of 200-odd EU officials who manage no more than a few hundred million euros. Compared to NATO or the German army, the numbers are rather small. On the face of it, Andrew Moravcsik may have been right when he wrote that ESDP was but a "pipe dream."
Or is it? When one includes the multibillion euro defense firms that now deal with the European Defense Agency on a regular basis and the hundreds of military officers who plan EU exercises in their respective defense ministries, one begins to see the importance of ESDP. In less than 10 years, the EU has conducted almost 20 crisis management operations, some small like the border assistance mission in Palestine, others big like the 7,000-strong peacekeeping force in Bosnia. The European Force deployed to Chad last February saw a first soldier, Sergeant Polin, die for the Union.
To carry out these operations, the EU has created a host of political-military bodies: the Political and Security Committee (COPS), where decision-making takes place; the EU Military Committee, which gathers chiefs of defense; and an ever expanding EU Military Staff. The European Defense Agency, which aims at streamlining procurement in what remains an extremely fragmented defense market, is ruled by a board of defense ministers that uses the ultimate sovereignty taboo: qualified majority voting. Despite the many shortcomings of ESDP, no other regional organization has gone so far in building its own military arm, and European defense is hugely popular, often more so than the EU itself. The symbolic dimension of European defense was not lost on Nicolas Sarkozy, who declared it to be one of the priorities of the French presidency in 2008.
Understanding ESDP. For a few years after the Saint-Malo Summit, which launched the European defense initiative in 1998, there wasn't a great deal of theoretical literature on ESDP. Most of the writing was either descriptive or normative. The main issues at debate were whether ESDP would work, what kind of impact it would have on transatlantic relations, and how many precision-guided munitions or strategic transport aircrafts EU countries lacked compared to the US (the answer is: many).
But now the field is booming with new theoretical approaches to ESDP. Interestingly, most of the literature comes not from EU studies but from International Relations theory. Theoretical explanations fall into the predictable camps of realism, liberalism, and constructivism.
Realists long assumed that, without a clear and present threat, it was unlikely that European states would engage in military cooperation. After the Iraq crisis, however, this skepticism gave way to the audacious prediction that ESDP would be used as a way for European countries to balance the US. Robert Art (2004) and a few realist heavyweights alluded to this scenario in a series of papers on soft balancing. But it is Seth Jones (2007) and Barry Posen (2006) who have explored the balancing thesis more systematically. In a rigorous book, The Rise of European Security Cooperation, Jones argues that ESDP is one of the strategies used by France, and to a lesser extent the UK, to simultaneously bind Germany into the European order and soft balance against the US. In other words, ESDP is the product of multipolarity in Europe and unipolarity in the world. Posen goes even further: because ESDP is about military capabilities, it should be described as a form of hard balancing. What the Europeans are doing, he claims, is readying themselves militarily for when the US will no longer underwrite their security or, more ominously, when they become fed up with US unilateralism.
The balancing thesis is predicated on the oft-heard argument that the Europeans are trying to undermine NATO. ESDP would be something like the beginning of a rival military alliance. The reality, however, is that most EU governments see ESDP as a complement to the Atlantic Alliance, and that most of the problems in the EU-NATO relationship are caused by a non-EU country, Turkey, for reasons that have little to do with grand strategy. And while realists may provide a plausible model to analyze French policy, they look much more uncomfortable with the British case, an important force behind ESDP since the days of Tony Blair and yet one whose behavior does not quite fit the balancing thesis—to say the least. To understand the British, as always, we better turn to liberalism.
Few liberals have in fact paid attention to ESDP. This is surprising, for if there is one area in which there are externalities to internalize and economies of scale to be made (Foucault 2009), it has got to be security and defense, where the waste of duplication is plentiful. But liberals have tended to assume that these coordinating functions were already taken on by NATO. Arousing the interest of liberals has also been made more difficult by the fact that there are actually few domestic interest groups (with the possible exception of one or two large defense firms) that have really pushed for a European defense policy. Nevertheless, Robert Dover (2007) has recently made a compelling case for using liberal intergovernmentalism. In The Europeanization of British Defence Policy, he shows how the UK managed to "upload" its preferences for beefed-up, NATO-friendly European capabilities at the EU level. ESDP, he argues, has been used to lock EU governments into what is essentially a British conception of the security architecture. For Dover, Tony Blair and his entourage promoted ESDP mainly as a means to salvage NATO. Why the French swallowed this is far from clear, however.
Perhaps, then, we are observing a case of constructive ambiguity in which preferences matter less than beliefs systems? That, at any rate, is what constructivists surmise. Being less interested in the motives of the British and the French than in the ideational preconditions of a common defense policy, constructivists focus on the notion of strategic culture, which refers to "the socially-transmitted, identity-derived norms, ideas and patterns of behavior that are shared among the most influential actors and social groups within a political community, which help to shape a ranked set of options for a community's pursuit of security and defense goals" (Meyer 2006: 20).
Constructivists disagree among themselves about the extent to which a European strategic culture is in the making. Bastian Giegerich (2006), for example, documents the endurance of national norms and beliefs among EU countries. He finds that there remain important ideational cleavages between Atlanticists and Europeanists, and between those who favor traditional defence versus those who support force projection. Howorth (2007), Meyer (2006) and Cornish and Edwards (2001), however, argue that there has been a certain degree of convergence since 1989 around threat perceptions. This convergence is attributable to new forms of cross-socialization within EU institutions and common learning from the crises that plagued the European continent in the 1990s, notably the Balkans wars. For an even more sanguine argument, look for Stephanie Anderson's Crafting EU Security Policy. Highlighting the impressive popularity of ESDP in the general public, she argues that the creation of a common defense policy is a nation-building project and that it is, as such, inseparable from the development of a common European identity.
What is ESDP about?. The contributions reviewed are all extremely valuable and the purpose of this essay is not to distribute good points and bad points. But it seems to me that the big picture is missing in these accounts. To be sure, European defense represents, in the words of Mark Webber and his colleagues (2004: 19), "one of the great political revolutions of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries." The most striking element of this revolution, in my view, is found in the myriad forms of social integration that now take place among European armed forces, at the policy but also at the operational level. This "intensive transgovernmentalism" was made possible by what amounts to a quiet denationalization of defense policy in Europe. Defence staffs are constantly looking for what their counterparts are doing, sharing good practices, emulating each other, and meeting with each other – probably more so than health or education officials. The endless quest for "interoperability" (of materiel, of procedures, of men) means that, today, very few defense policies are unaffected by European (not necessarily EU) developments.
There is no such thing as a purely British defense policy anymore, let alone a Belgian one. Gone are the ideas of launching national procurement programs (the French Rafale aircraft should be the last one) or deploying a stand-alone national contingent abroad (again, the French are not expected to repeat their 2002 experience in Côte d'Ivoire). In the 21st Century, almost operation or procurement program has to be justified in the name of European security. French and German reforms, which were consciously undertaken to fit European defense (whatever that means) are a case in point. Faced with declining budgets and a deep existential crisis, European armed forces have embarked on a wide-ranging strategy of internationalization, in which Brussels features prominently (Mérand 2008). ESDP is part of that. But so is France's rapprochement with NATO.
If I am right, we should be careful not to overstate the extent to which ESDP constitutes a break with the past. In many ways, ours is a story of "Europeanization without the European Union" (Irondelle 2003). The reality is that the process of internationalization has been going on for a good number of years, largely thanks to NATO and the post-1989 growth of multinational peace operations. When we think of globalization, the military is probably not the first institution that comes to mind. Yet in a very real way, European armed forces now function like multinational corporations: operating most of the time in a multinational context, they rely on the same procedures, speak the same language (English, that is), and more often than not use the same equipment. Through academic exchanges, secondments, common exercises, joint procurement programs, policy conferences, language training, technical working groups, and above all the continuous preparation for and conduct of military operations, a transgovernmental security and defense arena has emerged in Europe which is quite unparalleled in the world.
The creation of this transgovernmental arena, first around NATO but increasingly around the EU in the ESDP framework, means that European defense is above all a space of interaction in which new practices and social representations are generated. The fact that the neutral Swedes and Irish, as well as the Germans, have deployed to sub-Saharan Africa under a twelve-star flag is just one example. In Chad or in the Congo, these soldiers confron a post-colonial reality that is new for them, while the French must, quite simply, learn to speak English.
In a way, whether the next French president wants to balance against the US or the Europeans get their act together in Afghanistan is quite irrelevant: European military integration is here to stay.
Frédéric Mérand is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Montreal
- Anderson, Stephanie. 2008. Crafting EU Security Policy. Boulder: Lynne Rienner.
- Art, Robert. 2004. "Europe Hedges Its Security Bet." In TV Paul et al. Balance of Power: Theory and Practice in the 21st Century. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
- Cornish, Paul and G. Edwards. 2001. "Beyond the EU/NATO Dichotomy: The Beginnings of a European Strategic Culture," International Affairs. 77(3): 597-603.
- Dover, Robert. 2007. The Europeanization of British Defence Policy. Aldershot: Ashgate.
- Foucault, Martial. 2009. Political Economy of the European Security and Defence Policy. Amsterdam: Elsevier.
- Giegerich, Bastian. 2006. European Security and Strategic Culture: National Responses to the EU's Security and Defence Policy. Baden-Baden: Nomos.
- Howorth, Jolyon. 2007. Security and Defence Policy in the European Union. Houndmills: Palgrave.
- Irondelle, Bastien. 2003. "Europeanization without the European Union: French Military Reforms, 1991-1996," Journal of European Public Policy 10(2):208-226.
- Jones, Seth. 2007. The Rise of European Security Cooperation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Mérand, Frédéric. 2008. European Defence Policy: Beyond the Nation State. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Meyer, Christoph. 2006. The Quest for a European Strategic Culture: Changing Norms on Security and Defence in the European Union. Houndmills: Palgrave.
- Posen, Barry. 2006. "European Security and Defence Policy: Response to Unipolarity?" Security Studies 15(2): 149-86.
- Webber, Mark, S. Croft, J. Howorth, T. Terriff and E. Krahmann. 2004. "The Governance of European Security," Review of International Studies 30(1): 3-26.
Foreign Policy and Security in Early European Integration: A Survey of Recent Work
N. Piers Ludlow
The desire to use the European integration process to boost the member states' collective clout on the international stage is as old as the European integration process itself. Indeed many historians would argue that the realization by Western Europe's leaders in the wake of the Second World War that their countries had lost the centrality to world affairs which their predecessors had taken for granted constituted one of the key spurs to initiate tighter European cooperation. As the German Chancellor, Konrad Adenauer, is meant to have commented to Guy Mollet, the French Prime Minister, in the aftermath of Britain and France's combined humiliation at Suez in 1956—perhaps the episode which most clearly symbolized the eclipse of Europe's remaining "great powers"—"Europe will be your revenge" (Pineau 1976, p.191). But actually realizing this ambition and devising a European framework which would enable the states of Europe to combine their strength without sacrificing too much of their prized national autonomy has proved a frustrating and difficult task.
The first, and perhaps still probably the best-known, demonstration of this fact came in 1954 with the demise of the European Defence Community (EDC). The rejection of the ambitious Treaty of Paris by the French National Assembly was widely seen as the first major crisis of European integration—and of course constitutes a timely reminder that problematical ratification processes are nothing new in the development of European cooperation! Despite its topicality, however, the EDC episode has generated relatively little historical scholarship of late. There have been a few national studies that have devoted some space to the episode (Hitchcock 1998; Large 1995; Granieri 2003; Dwan 2001; Pastor-Castro 2006; Ruane 2000; Mawby 1999). Skogmar's The United States and the Nuclear Dimension of European Integration (2004) also adds at least one important new theory as to why French parliamentarians turned against an idea which their own government had proposed. This is to suggest that one of the factors behind the French vote against the EDC was the American attempt to use the putative defence structure as a means of controlling European access to nuclear technology. France in other words turned against European defence so as to protect its national right to develop a nuclear deterrent. And there has been one very useful comparative investigation of the way in which French and Italian Christian Democrats viewed the issue (Risso 2007). But the last volume to consider the episode from the point of view of all of the states involved was Dumoulin's somewhat uneven edited volume dating from 2000. Those wanting to look at the episode in detail will therefore be obliged to return to some of the older literature: Fursdon (1979), Warner (1985), Schwartz (1986), and Clesse (1989).
This recent neglect may in part reflect the dominance—in the English-speaking world especially—of Alan Milward's ideas about the origins of the European integration process (Milward 1992). For if Milward is right to emphasize the economic origins of the European Communities, then the EDC was a deviation from the main course of European developments the failure of which needs little explanation. As the pendulum swings back in favour of more political causes, however, or at very least of explanations which stress the complementarity of political and economic motivations, then the rise and fall of the EDC project may regain importance (see Ludlow 2009 on this trend). It will still have to contend, though, with the way in which most contemporary historians tend to be drawn towards the very latest release of official government documents. Given that most Western European countries operate a "thirty-year-rule," declassifying material after three decades have elapsed, this means that interest in the 1950s has waned to be replaced by a focus on the 1960s, and now increasingly the 1970s. Much of the recent historical writing on the checkered past of European foreign policy and defence cooperation efforts has therefore been concentrated on these two decades.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, a great deal of this new historiography has been devoted to the ever-fascinating figure of Charles de Gaulle and his vision of a political Europe. The French President made a number of attempts in his early years in power to persuade his partners that the Six member states of the European Community should flank their economic integration with "political union"—in other words with tighter coordination of foreign policy and perhaps ultimately defence policy. The most famous of these attempts was the Fouchet Plan of 1961. The nature of these French proposals, their underlying intent, and the reasons for which the scheme ultimately failed have been explored by Soutou (1999) and Vaïsse (1998). The most recent English-language account is Giauque (2002), although given this book's decision to concentrate only on the larger European states, this needs to be flanked with Vanke (2001) so as to fully understand the opposition the French scheme encountered. The clash between de Gaulle's ideas and those of the Kennedy Administration in Washington which Giauque does capture well, is also covered in Mahan (2002), Bange (2000) and Conze (1995). And for a totally different reading of the Fouchet Plan, which sees it more as a tactical move rather than a genuine attempt to build a more political Europe, it is worth also reading Moravcsik (2000). De Gaulle"s later more restricted vision of cooperation just with the West Germans—his plan B once plan A of six power cooperation had been thwarted—has also been extensively studied. The most comprehensive studies all require a knowledge of either French or German: Marcowitz (1996), Lappenküper (2001), Soutou (1996) or Schoenborn (2007). But Giauque (2002) does offer some English-language coverage on the French side, while Granieri (2003) and Oppelland (2001) provide information about the German response.
The desire for foreign policy cooperation was not just a Gaullist dream, however. As is made clear in Germond (2001) and Ludlow (2006), most of France"s partners shared the French interest in greater European foreign policy cooperation, despite disagreeing with de Gaulle's efforts to lessen Europe's ties to the United States. It was therefore unsurprising that renewed efforts in the direction of foreign policy cooperation should proliferate once the General resigned in 1969. One starting point for these post-de Gaulle discussions would be the special issue in 2003 of the Journal of European Integration History devoted to The Hague Conference of December 1969—the moment when Europe's "relaunch" after the Gaullist crises is generally held to have begun. Another would be a detailed study of British policy towards the Six in the 1967-70 period, which shows how the government of Harold Wilson sought to use the widespread interest in foreign policy coordination to rally the five member states in favour of British accession to the Community and to isolate France (Pine 2008). The extent of German ambitions in the early 1970s and in particular the desire to flank Ostpolitik with an ever more effective Westpolitik is very evident in Loth (2007). And a fourth valuable source is the latest in the series of edited volumes produced by the so-called Liaison Committee of European Union Historians which present a cross-section of the most recent research on integration history (van der Harst 2007).
The early years of the European Political Cooperation (EPC) process still await comprehensive treatment. Moeckli (2008 forthcoming) is likely to be the most detailed study. In the meantime, however, there are a number of more specialised studies which zero-in on both the successes and the failures of this first operational attempt at coordinating the policies of the Six and then the Nine. Romano (2007) highlights the positive side of the story, recounting the highly successful efforts to devise a unified European stance at the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE). A study of the Dutch and the 1973 oil crisis, by contrast, covers the much less fruitful attempts by the Nine to adopt a coherent response to the sudden hike in oil prices and demonstrates that the fissile effects of Middle Eastern crises on European politics long pre-date the Iraq war (Hellema 2004).
Overall then, there is plenty of historical literature which illustrates how deeply the states of Western Europe have aspired to create an effective mechanism to coordinate their foreign policies and thereby to obtain a collective foreign policy presence commensurate with the EC/EU"s commercial role (the best overview is Deighton & Bossuat 2007). But equally clearly the historical research on topic underlines that the ongoing problems and controversies surrounding CFSP or ESDP are but the latest manifestation of a trend stretching back to 1954 at least. The lure of what the French term une Europe puissance is undeniable; the difficulties of getting there remain painfully apparent.
N. Piers Ludlow is Senior Lecturer in International History at the London School of Economics and Political Science
- Bange, O. 2000. The EEC Crisis of 1963: Kennedy, Macmillan, De Gaulle, and Adenauer in Conflict. Basingstoke: Macmillan.
- Clesse, A.. 1989. Le Projet de C.E.D. du Plan Pleven au crime du 30 août: histoire d'un malentendu européen. Baden-Baden: Nomos.
- Conze, E.. 1995. Die gaullistische Herausforderung: Die deutsch-französischen Beziehungen in der amerikanischen Europapolitik, 1958-1963. Munich: Oldenbourg.
- Deighton, A. & Bossuat, G.. 2007. The EC/EU: A World Security Actor? Paris: Soleb.
- Dumoulin, M. 2000. The European Defence Community. Lessons for the Future? Bern: Peter Lang.
- Dwan, R. 2001. "Jean Monnet and the European Defence Community," Cold War History, 1/3.
- Fursdon, E. 1980. The European Defence Community: A History. London: Macmillan.
- Germond, C. 2001. "Les projets d'Union politique de l'année 1964" in Loth, W., ed. Crises and Compromises: The European Project 1963-1969. Baden-Baden: Nomos.
- Giauque, J.G. 2002. Grand Designs and Visions of Unity: The Atlantic Powers and the Reorganization of Western Europe, 1955–1963. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.
- Granieri, R.J. 2003. The Ambivalent Alliance: Konrad Adenauer, the CDU/CSU, and the West, 1949-1966. New York: Berghahn Books.
- Harst, J. van der. 2007. Beyond the Customs Union: The European Community's Quest for Deepening, Widening and Completion, 1969-1975. Brussels: Bruylant.
- Hellema, D., Wiebes, C. & Witte, T. 2004. The Netherlands and the Oil Crisis. Amsterdam University Press.
- Hitchcock, W.I. 1998. France Restored: Cold War Diplomacy and the Quest for Leadership in Europe, 1944-1954. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.
- Lappenküper, U. 2001. Die deutsch-französischen Beziehungen 1949-1963, 2 vols. Munich: Oldebourg.
- Large, D.C. 1995. Germans to the Front: West German Rearmament in the Adenauer Era. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.
- Loth, W. 2007. "Détente and European integration in the policies of Willy Brandt and Georges Pompidou," in Ludlow, N.P., ed. European Integration and the Cold War: Ostpolitik/Westpolitik, 1965-1973. London: Routledge.
- Ludlow, N.P. 2006. "Widening, Deepening and Opening Out: Towards a Fourth Decade of European Integration History," in Ludlow, N.P., ed. The European Community and the Crises of the 1960s: Negotiating the Gaullist Challenge. London: Routledge.
- Mahan, E. 2002. Kennedy, De Gaulle and Western Europe. Basingstoke: Palgrave.
- Marcowitz, R. 1996. Option für Paris? Unionsparteien, SPD und Charles de Gaulle 1958 bis 1969. Munich: Oldenbourg.
- Mawby, S.. 1999. Containing Germany: Britain and the Arming of the Federal Republic. Basingstoke: Macmillan.
- Milward, A.S. 1992. The European Rescue of the Nation-State. London: Routledge.
- Möckli, D. 2008. European Foreign Policy during the Cold War: Heath, Brandt, Pompidou and the Dream of Political Unity. London: IB Tauris.
- Moravcsik, A. 2000. "De Gaulle Between Grain and Grandeur: The Political Economy of French EC Policy, 1958–1970 (Part 1)," Journal of Cold War Studies, 2/2.
- Oppelland, T. 2001. "'Entangling Alliances with None'—Neither De Gaulle nor Hallstein. The European Politics of Gerhard Schröder in the 1965/6 Crisis," in Loth, W., Crises and Compromises: The European Project 1963-1969. Baden-Baden: Nomos.
- Pastor-Castro, R. 2006. "The Quai d'Orsay and the European Defense Community Crisis of 1954," History 91/303.
- Pine, M. 2008. Harold Wilson and Europe: Pursuing Britain's Membership of the European Community. London: IB Tauris.
- Pineau, C. 1976. 1956. Suez. Paris: Robert Laffond.
- Risso, L. 2007. Divided We Stand: The French and Italian Political Parties and the Rearmament of West Germany, 1949-1955. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
- Romano, A. 2007. "The Nine and the Conference of Helsinki: A Challenging Game with the Soviets" in Harst, J. van der, ed. Beyond the Customs Union: The European Community's Quest for Deepening, Widening and Completion, 1969-1975. Brussels: Bruylant.
- Ruane, K. 2000. The Rise and Fall of the European Defence Community: Anglo-American Relations and the Crisis of European Defence, 1950-55. New York: St. Martin's Press.
- Schoenborn, B. 2007. Le mésentente apprivoisée. De Gaulle et les Allemands, 1963-1969. Paris: Presses universitaires de France.
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- Soutou, G.H. 1996. L'alliance incertaine. Les rapports politico-stratégiques franco-allemands, 1954-1996. Paris: Fayard, 1996.
- Vaïsse, M. 1998. La grandeur. Politique étrangère du général de Gaulle 1958-1969. Paris: Fayard.
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- Warner, G. 1985. "The United States and Rearmament of West Germany 1950-4," International Affairs, 61/2.
EUSA BIENNIAL CONFERENCE
April 23-25, 2009
Call for papers and panels
The European Union Studies Association invites scholars and practitioners engaged in the study of Europe and the European Union to submit panel and paper proposals for its 2009 Eleventh Biennial International Conference, April 23-25 in Los Angeles, California. This conference also marks the 20th anniversary of EUSA. The Program Committee plans to promote the broadest possible exchange of theoretical approaches, disciplinary perspectives and research agendas. Please note the following:
- On the basics of paper and panel proposals:
- We welcome both paper and panel proposals, particularly those that foster transatlantic dialogue. Panel proposals need to consist of three to four papers.
- Participants are limited to two appearances on the conference program (two papers or one paper and one discussant role; chair roles do not count toward the appearance limit). Participants should therefore submit no more than two proposals.
- For organizational reasons, the program is subdivided into six substantive sections (integration theory, institutions, economics and political economy, political sociology, law and public policy, external relations). Please indicate for which section you would like to be considered. Note that there is no fixed number of panels for each section. Choosing one section rather than another does not enhance or diminish your chances of having your paper or panel accepted.
- On a new presentational format for EUSA 2009:
- For papers that we judge meritorious but which cannot be included in regular panels, we will offer a new format instead of poster sessions. In two time-slots during the conference (on Friday and Saturday morning) several papers will be grouped in thematic "workshops" around a round table. Presenters will give extremely brief (3-4 minute) statements and then move to discussion. Multiple workshops will run concurrently in a large room, such that visitors can move around and sit in on discussions. Our hope is that this format will preserve some of the openness of poster sessions but will provide more substantive interaction.
- Teaching workshops:
- EUSA offers two time slots for teaching workshops during the conference. For more information, please refer to the call for teaching workshops that will be published separately.
- Other conditions:
- The Program Committee reserves the right to make changes to organized panel proposals, including their composition.
- You do not need to be an EUSA member to submit a proposal, but all those appearing on the conference program must be current EUSA members.
- We cannot honor individual scheduling requests; by submitting a proposal you agree to be available from 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, April 23rd through 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 25th.
The 2009 Program Committee is:
- Frank Schimmelfennig (ETH Zurich), Chair
- Lisa Conant (University of Denver), Law and Public Policy
- Matthew Gabel (Washington University in St. Louis), Political Sociology
- Michel Gueldry (Monterey Institute of International Studies), Teaching Workshops
- Mark Hallerberg (Hertie School of Governance and Emory University), Economics and Political Economy
- Joseph Jupille (University of Colorado), Institutions
- Craig Parsons (University of Oregon), Integration Theory
- Michael E. Smith (University of St. Andrews), External Relations
The firm deadline for receipt of paper and panel proposals is September 30, 2008. We regret that we cannot consider proposals received after this date. You will be notified of the Program Committee's decision regarding your proposal by December 15, 2008.
How to submit a paper or panel proposal: All proposals must be submitted via our online proposal submission forms, which will be located at www.eustudies.org beginning August 4, 2008. Proposals must be submitted via the website. We do not accept proposals by e-mail, regular mail or via facsimile. Address all questions about the proposal process to firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone to 412.648.7635.
EUSA Public Opinion and Participation Interest Section
Who Are "The Europeans"?
David Michael Green
The economic and institutional integration of Europe is an established fact even if the trajectory of that process often seems to resemble the punctuated equilibrium model of evolutionary biology, with Ireland's rejection of the Lisbon Treaty providing only the most recent example.
But what of European mass political identity? And does that identity matter?
The answer to the second question is quite likely an emphatic 'yes', although more challenging times for Europe than the relatively munificent and highly pacific decades marking the integration journey so far may be required to fully test that proposition. As Easton and Dennis noted, polities are dependent upon a level of "diffuse support [which] forms a reservoir upon which a system typically draws in times of crises, such as depressions, wars, and internecine conflicts, when perceived benefits may recede to their lowest ebb" (1969: 63).
While the significance question may ultimately need to be left for political philosophy to untangle, this study responds to the first question, employing a range of empirical data toward addressing several key themes: Are there any 'Europeans' in Europe? Have their numbers changed over time? Who adopts this identity, and who doesn't? What is the nature and content of the identity for those who possess it? And how deep does it run? These questions are examined in this article, as well as in a book-length treatment of the same topic (Green, 2007).
To address these themes, I have employed a multi-methodological approach, examining a large volume of both quantitative and qualitative data. The former include every extant survey dataset (Eurobarometer, European Community Studies, International Social Survey Program, World Values Studies) I could find that included an identity-related question. These totaled 33 altogether, ranging from 1970 through 2002, and including about a quarter-million respondents in total (from the pre-enlargements 15 EU member-states only). I also fielded my own small, non-random, survey of likely European identifiers (SEI) in 1998, which received 271 responses from nationals of 31 countries. These quantitative data were supplemented by about 150 interviews of both elites and targeted European identifiers in order to add greater depth to the portrait painted by the statistical analysis.
Are There Any 'Europeans' In Europe? Attitudes toward the European Union could hardly be described as generally admiring, when they exist at all in the public mind. Moreover, Europe competes with other polities—national, regional, municipal, even global—for the affections of people living on the continent. Of course, most of these have a much deeper historical claim on such identities than does Europe. So it is not an altogether absurd notion to wonder whether any Europeans actually feel European.
Of course, simply to ask this question immediately plunges us into the elusive domain of identity research, and all the problems associated with measuring such recondite attitudinal phenomena. How do we define identification? Can it change over time? Might it be contextual or situational? Can one individual simultaneously juggle multiple identities of a political sort—let alone other religious or cultural ones? Can a defined-response survey question ever hope to address so emotional and so slippery a question?
Analysis of political identity suggests that it can be measured with a acceptable degree of confidence, especially if we are willing to bring multiple techniques and data sources to bear on the question, and to do so, better yet, in large quantities.
Reviewing existing surveys, I found four basic question formats which go to directly to the measurement of European identity (there are also many other questions posed on related aspects of identity—meaning, depth, etc.—discussed below). Table 1 arrays percentage responses to these identity questions across the decades, aggregated by format (since any cross-format comparison of responses to different stimuli would be meaningless).
Format One questions asked, "Which of these geographical groups would you say you belong to first of all?" Respondents could choose between their town, their region, their country, Europe, and the world as a whole. A follow up question asked them to specify their second choice from the same list. The second identity question format asked respondents "Does the thought ever occur to you that you are not only [nationality] but also a European? Does this happen often, sometimes, or never?"
For Format Three, Eurobarometer 41 1 posed to respondents the same question described in Format Two, but asked them to locate their response on a ten point scale — with '1' representing "Not at all also European" and '10' being "Very much also European" — rather than choosing among the three ordinal responses. Finally, in the fourth format, inquiries were made in separate questions about the respondents' feelings toward the same various geo-polities listed under Format One (town, region, country, etc.). Our interest is in the fourth in this series, asking "How close [or attached] do you feel to Europe?" or "the European Union?" Respondents could choose between answering "Not close [attached] at all", "Not very close [attached]", "Close [attached]", or "Very close [attached]".
The downside to having these four separate measures of the same phenomenon is the incomparability of the results, which is especially unfortunate given the tendency for the formats to have been grouped together chronologically, rather than rotated. A perhaps even more troubling problem to multiple formats is given by the inevitable resulting question: Which one actually measures identity? However, there is also an upside to this embarrassment of measurement riches – notwithstanding the unresolved problems just described. The good news may be that, while we have no single definitive measure of identity, we are triangulating in on the concept more insightfully by using multiple measures.
Those epistemological problems aside, what do the figures in Table 1 tell us? Are there any 'Europeans' in Europe? Clearly, there are. But how should we quantify that cohort, especially given variable response tendencies corresponding to multiple question formats? I think there are essentially two answers. First, the Format One prompt provides the most stringent construct, asking respondents to choose one polity over other possibilities. In response to this highest hurdle, there seems to be a fairly steady five percent or so who choose Europe as their primary identity. That is certainly not a lot in relative terms, though it is nearly twenty million people in absolute terms, far more than the population of many of the 15 member-states in the surveys.
Second, if we relax the stringency of the test a little, and allow respondents to choose the frequency or degree to which they think of themselves as European, or their level of attachment/closeness to Europe or the EU, another fairly consistent pattern emerges. These data suggest that we might generally aggregate Europeans into three broad categories with respect to their European identity. First, there are the core identifiers, who comprise something on the order of 15 percent of the population. Then, there are another 35 percent or so who can be labeled as secondary-level identifiers. The remaining 50 percent of Europeans possess little in the way of European identity. (Indeed, some proportion of them may even be actively hostile to that concept, though the survey data rarely allows us to break them out from those who simply don't identify.)
Altogether, then, yes – there certainly are tens, if not hundreds, of millions of Europeans who feel just that regarding their political identities, some quite strongly so. However, it is equally clear that this remains far from a broad majority sentiment, particularly if we measure that identity choice using a stringent, hierarchical test.
European Identification over Time. Because the four identity measure formats tend to be grouped together chronologically in terms of the dates they were fielded, it is difficult to measure the degree to which the identity has changed over time. A much better situation from the perspective of addressing that question would have been for a single measure to have been employed across the several decades since surveying began.
As Table 1 shows, our closest approximation to that preference is given by the fielding of the Format One question. In addition to being included in early Eurobarometer runs, as well as two predecessor surveys, this question was also asked in the three fieldings of the World Values Survey shown in the table. Thus, we have data from multiple points across the 1970s, along with a snapshot at the beginning of each of the subsequent three decades.
To the extent that is satisfactory for forming a conclusion about the longitudinal aspects of European identity, that conclusion strongly suggests that a remarkable stasis is present. In other words, the surveys consistently find a distribution of roughly 5, 12 and 82 percent of responses to, respectively, the first, second and neither choices for Europe when respondents were asked which geo-polity they identify with. (The one exception is the 2000 round of the World Values Survey, the one instance where respondents had the option to actively reject a European identity in the question battery. Eighteen percent did so, leaving 66 percent in the category who chose Europe neither first nor second. This 18 percent may represent a decent approximation of the number of Europeans who generally strongly reject the identity, as opposed to simply preferring other choices.)
While the consistency of the findings here is probably good news from a methodological perspective, suggesting confidence in a measure that is robustly reliable, substantively, the data lead to the intriguing finding that identity levels in Europe are fairly impervious to developments on the ground. The thirty years from 1971 until 2001 certainly witnessed any number of European integration's more notorious episodes of punctuated equilibrium (though perhaps its lowest low – the Empty Chair Crisis – and its highest high – the successful public conversion to the euro – just bracket this period). Interestingly, however, nothing much seems to move the meter very far in one direction or another. And, equally interestingly, neither does the accumulation of more sheer public experience of the EU over the years, nor generational turnover.
Who Are The 'Europeans'? In order to identify measures of association which might explain a given individual's level of identification with Europe, I constructed regression models for each survey containing a dependent variable measure, and introduced a host of independent variables into the equations. These latter were employed as indicators for a series of hypotheses falling into four categories.
Attributional hypotheses include those linking standard demographic measures, such as age, sex, educational level, class, and income, to levels of European identity. Attitudinal hypotheses do the same thing with respect to such constructs as ideology, nontraditionalism, postmaterialism (Inglehart, 1977) and support for integration. Social-psychological hypotheses address concepts like efficacy, instrumentalism, socialization and others. Finally, political-cultural hypotheses look first at identity by nationality, and then substitute concepts such as the size of the country, its confessional proportions, its wealth, and other attributes in place of respondent nationality. Altogether, about two dozen hypotheses were tested wherever relevant measures could be found in each survey, of which there were also nearly two dozen examined.
Needless to say, this array produced far too a large volume of findings to fully present here, a quantity made even more expansive by the fact that many of the hypotheses employed multiple variables to measure the relationship in question. However, some brief highlights from the findings include the following:
- Individuals who are more likely to possess a European identity include: elites, cosmopolitans, males, postmaterialists, Catholics, those with left and centrist ideologies, those who perceive instrumental benefits from European integration, and those who hold a normative belief in the value of integration.
- Additionally, there are positive though less robust associations between European identity and: high levels of political efficacy, membership in a religious and/or regional minority group within respective member-states, and nationals of countries that more recently joined the EU.
- Countries whose populations tend toward significantly higher in levels of European identification include France, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain and Austria. Conversely, significantly lower levels of European identity are found in the Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Britain, Greece, and Finland. The remaining cases are more ambiguous, either because of variability in the direction of the effect, or because of a lack of statistically significant differentiation from baseline countries (thus suggesting that these countries are toward the center of the distribution). These are Belgium, Germany, Portugal and Sweden.
- Some factors that were hypothesized to associate positively with European identification levels but actually did not include age, nontraditionalist attitudes, country size, or national legacy from World War II.
- Finally, socialization processes and leadership effects were also hypothesized to affect European identity, but only limited quantitative data was available to test the former, and none to test the latter.
The Nature and Content of European Identity. We know that some people identify with Europe, and we can even predict to a certain degree who might fall into that category. But what is the meaning of the identity for those who posses it?
To begin with, even the idea of a singular content to European identity is itself contested. Only slightly less than half of those surveyed even agreed to its existence.
Beyond that, the notion of peace was referred to most frequently by those surveyed. Other attributes included a shared sense of culture, democracy, human rights and economic solidarity. For those who don't much identify as Europeans, there was a tendency to define the identity in terms of instrumental benefits to be had from integration, while for those who do identify with Europe, shared history and a common heritage are frequent ascribed themes. Ironically—given that exclusivity is commonly seen as integral to nationalism and most other forms of political identity—diversity, multiculturalism and tolerance are important aspects of European identity, especially to subscribers. Could you add a phrase to suggest what is ironic about this, or replace/strike "Ironically"?
Finally, what is in some ways the most intriguing characteristic of this identity was perhaps best summarized by one such identifier interviewed for this project, when she said "Europe is something that rings a bell in your mind, but not in your heart. It doesn't have a spirit."
What she was pointing to is the identity's cerebral, cognitive, nature, which is far different from the highly emotive, often involuntarily so, qualities typically associated with nationalism and local or regional identities. Many of those who identify with Europe seem to do so because they have rationally calculated that integration's development and salience are the crucial ingredients necessary for continued peace and prosperity on the continent.
In short, Europeans tend to love their nations and localities, sometimes unconditionally, while Europe they instead appreciate—and even then, rather conditionally.
The Depth of European Identity. A final aspect of European identity worthy of consideration concerns its depth of sentiment. This notion—like so many surrounding the topic—is difficult to operationalize and measure. However, surely the idea of willingness to sacrifice comes close to at least a major core meaning of identity depth.
Especially given that Europe is a relatively new actor amongst alternative polities, religions and other calls upon identity and sacrifice pressing upon individual Europeans, and that it is a rather vague and remote phenomenon, it is remarkable that survey respondents and interviewed informants do in fact express a willingness to make sacrifices for Europe. They are about equally inclined to sacrifice for Europe as for their religious faiths, and not terribly less willing to do so than for their countries. About half of them are willing to make sacrifices for other Europeans, and a robustly consistent 80-90 percent are willing for their national governments to do so.
Once again, however, interviews with Europhiles reveal that—even among this population—this willingness to sacrifice takes on a very rational, cognitive flavor. For example, on the question of taxes, these informants tend to see little difference between paying the dues necessary to provide for services at the national or European level. They want transparency and efficiency in the administration of such programs, but they otherwise support the concept equally at either level.
What Is The Significance of European Identity? European identity is something different in a world used to nationalisms and other passionate affinities, making its interpretation challenging.
Is it simply sui generis - an identity like no other - static and limited in its popularity, unique in its emotionally dessicated nature?
Or would it look the same as other identities, were we to have taken a snapshot of those at a similarly early juncture in their development? Is Europe waiting for some great war or other catastrophe, some charismatic figure, or some great breach in relations—say with the United States—to shift its identity into a higher gear, and thus give it a more traditional appearance?
There is a third possibility, as well, which is that the Europeans have adopted a new, vanguard form of political identity, replacing the powerful, passionate, nationalisms of old with something of a more diffident, considered and reciprocity-based nature.
If so, this would not be the first time that Europeans pioneered some new construct in international politics (not least including nationalism, itself). And, given the oceans of blood spilled in the name of earlier types of political identity, this new form could represent a welcome gift to other parts of the world.
David Michael Green is Associate Professor of Political Science at Hofstra University
- Easton, David and Jack Dennis. 1969. Children in the Political System: Origins of Political Legitimacy. New York: McGraw-Hill.
- Eurobarometer, Various Authors. Eurobarometer Numbers 3, 5, 6, 8, 10, 10A, 12, 13, 15, 18, 24, 27, 30, 31, 33-0, 34-0, 36-0, 37-0, 38-0, 41-1, 50-0, 51-0, 52-0, 54-1, 56-3, 58-1. ICPSR Version. 1975-2002. Ann Arbor, MI: Institute for Social Research [producer], Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor].
- Green, David Michael. 2007. The Europeans: Political Identity in an Emerging Polity. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers.
- Inglehart, Ronald. 1977. The Silent Revolution: Changing Values and Political Styles Among Western Publics. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press.
- Inglehart, Ronald and Jacques Rene Rabier. European Communities Studies, 1970, 1971 and 1973 [Computer file]. Conducted by Institut Francais D'Opinion Publique (IFOP), Paris, et al. ICPSR ed. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter university Consortium for Political and Social Research [producer and distributor].
- International Social Survey Program (ISSP). International Social Survey Program: National Identity, 1995 [Computer file]. ICPSR release. Koeln, Germany: Zentralarchiv fuer Empirische Sozialforschung [producer], 1998. Koeln, Germany: Zentralarchiv fuer Empirische Sozialforschung/Ann Arbor, MI: Inter university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributors], 1998.
- World Values Study Group. 1994. WORLD VALUES SURVEY, 1981-1984, 1990-1993 and 1999-2001 [Computer File]. ICPSR Version. Ann Arbor, MI: Institute for Social Research [producer], Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor].
EUSA EU as a Global Actor Interest Section Essay
Interest Section Sponsors Symposium on Transatlantic Relations with EU Ambassador John Bruton
In a symposium sponsored by the EU as a Global Actor interest section and hosted by the University of Wyoming, European Union Ambassador John Bruton, former prime minister of Ireland, gave the keynote address and presided over a panel discussion called "Strengthening US-EU Relations: National and Local Approaches." As Bruton explained:
Such events remind us that our world is getting both smaller and larger. Globalization has helped us in Europe and America to be better off than we have ever been. But it has also helped many millions elsewhere to live our high-consumption lifestyle and this overstretches global supplies of energy and food, and contributes to climate change. How can we—the EU and the U.S., those of us who have historically benefited most from globalization—work together and with other countries to address today's greatest challenge, developing sustainable and environmentally responsible economies? The transatlantic alliance is still the key motor of global economic growth, trade, and prosperity and we already collaborate widely to develop international standards, whether in terms of combating intellectual property violations, liberalizing trade, or fighting terrorism and transnational crime.
While all the panelists agreed that an US-EU partnership could create international standards and provide solutions for the world, the panelists worried that asymmetries in structures and, sometimes, outlook could stymie such cooperation. Colette Mazzucelli, Tom Seitz, and Stephanie Anderson all discussed organizational asymmetry issues with direct effects on cooperation in the foreign and security policy spheres. Ed Barbier, Mark Northam, Ed Bradley, and Robert Field all discussed how despite similar goals, the US and the EU are allowing asymmetries in outlook to undermine cooperation in economic, energy, agricultural and environmental policy.
Impact of the Lisbon Treaty. Colette Mazzucelli was especially concerned over the impact of the Lisbon Treaty's new architecture for the Union in its external relations' representation and its impact on future US-EU relations. Would this evolution bring coherence and clarity in the Union's relations with third countries? In her view, it was not clear how the new "High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy" would be able to accomplish multiple assigned tasks in practice. The President of the European Council is a position that changes fundamentally the original institutional design begging many serious questions: Will the Union's evolution, including the prospect of future enlargements, bring about crises that spur integration further? Will the tension between the decisions elites make to reform the original Treaties and a citizen's understanding of the Union's purpose in the world today grow stronger? How is a European Union of 30+ member states to articulate a strategic culture? These were only some of the questions yet to be addressed that made her uncertain as to the Union's direction as a global actor in this century. Answers to these questions are dependent on the leadership ability of the present generation to address these difficulties in a timely manner.
The Global War on Terror. Tom Seitz noted that The "Global War on Terror," as it has been known in the USA, opened a new chapter in security cooperation between the US and Europe. However, after an initial, post-September 11, 2001 feeling of common purpose, cooperation has been a bit bumpy and uneven on a practical level.
Much friction between the US and the EU has stemmed from serious, yet relatively unexplored differences regarding the very nature of the threat embodied in the "war on terror." Given these differences, it is hardly surprising that the US and EU differ over how to address this threat. One example is the oft-voiced debate over whether it is appropriate to refer to the effort as a "war" at all. On one hand, this difference stems from different approaches to terrorism in particular and security in general in recent history. This experience has predisposed the Americans to see the terrorist threat as foreign in nature, one to be met and dealt with as far from American shores as possible, while Europeans are more likely to see terrorism as local or even "home grown," and, thus, a Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) matter.
At the same time, there are bureaucratic impediments to increased cooperation. The expansion and enhanced role of EU institutions and "cross pillarization" represented in the increasingly external character of internal security policy coincides with the massive reorganization of Washington bureaucracy that has created the new, post-9/11 Department of Homeland Security. However, EUROPOL is not equivalent to the FBI. On both sides of the Atlantic, officials are reassessing the nature of their own responsibilities as well as the nature of the terror threat. It seems reasonable to hope that this reassessment could give rise to greater cooperation, so long as communication is maintained between security organizations in the US and the EU. Differing perceptions of the threat must be discussed between the two partners, lest security "cooperation" becomes nothing more than a dialog of the deaf.
EU-NATO Relations. Stephanie Anderson argued that needless "beauty contests," for example whether the EU or NATO was better suited to act in Darfur, were undermining vital transatlantic cooperation in the security sphere. She noted that the weekly meetings between the EU's Political and Security Committee (PSC) and NATO's North Atlantic Council (NAC) last less than thirty minutes including hellos and good-byes. The inability of this committee to conduct business is even more shocking when one considers that sixteen of representatives are "double-hatted," in other words, are one-in-the-same person, as they are simultaneously the ambassadors to both the EU and NATO.1
In her eyes, the problem lay in America's dominance in NATO. NATO's structural and ideological problems were mutually constitutive. Ultimately, no amount of reform could change the US position from that of leader of the Atlantic Alliance to that of mere contributing member. The US has overshadowed its European partners. As a result, "theological" problems arise as to whether Europe can be "European" while enmeshed in the Atlantic Alliance. While "tweaking" can facilitate smoother cooperation between these organizations, the ideological problem will remain as long as the US is a member.
Challenges and Opportunities in EU-US Economic Relationships. Edward B Barbier argued that the transatlantic economic relationship faced three fundamental challenges.
First, the European Union and the United States had to recognize that they had a common interest in working together to negotiate the changing structure of the world economy. Until now, the three "pillars" sustaining the global economy have been the United States, the European Union and Japan. Today, four new global economic powers are emerging, China, India, Russia and Iran, due to their dominance of world energy markets, their efforts to develop economically, and their global ambitions.
Second, studies have shown that sustaining growth in the advanced European Union and US economies is dependent on technological innovation and expanding human capital (i.e., educating and training the workforce). The EU-US economic relationship should be built on cooperating and collaborating to achieve this shared goal.
Third, despite the common challenges faced by the European Union and the United States, problems arising within their economies through increased globalization and structural change could lead to possible EU-US conflict. These included differences over agricultural and monetary policies, health care and social safety nets, immigration, and the environment (including global climate change). Resolving any disputes arising from these differences is imperative for the wider, shared goal of maintaining and enhancing the EU-US economic relationship.
Energy policy. Mark Northam was adamant that the EU and US must share in the R&D costs to discover new clean energy options. Seeing a fairly high degree of overlap in research programs, he argued that American and European collaboration would undoubtedly result in better utilization of funds and more rapid deployment of advanced technologies.
Northam warned that global energy markets were changing rapidly. While the United States and Europe used to dominate non-Middle Eastern energy supplies, sources of supply were now moving more dominantly to under-developed nations. The US and Europe also dominated demand, but, today, the greatest demand growth was occurring in the Far East. Supply of conventional energy resources may fail to meet demand in the near future with important impacts on our economies.
The EU and US could both benefit from cooperative research into clean alternatives to conventional oil and gas. Each group has complementary strengths to bring to the table. He suggested the following areas for cooperative research: Wind turbine design; smart-grid technologies; coal gasification—surface and subsurface; gas to liquids conversion; enhanced oil and gas recovery; and carbon capture and sequestration.
Agriculture. Ed Bradley recognized that differences in the positions of the United States and European Union on agriculture currently are less pronounced than at any time during the past 20 years. The trade distortions once attributable to European agricultural policy have been declining under the successive Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reforms of 1992, 1999 and 2003. These reforms and recent price increases in world commodity markets created an environment conducive for US-EU cooperation on agriculture. While agricultural trade liberalization still has been a stumbling block with the Doha round, North American-European disagreements have been mild compared to those between the developed and developing countries.
Agriculture however remains a source of stress in US-EU relations. Long unresolved trade disputes regarding products produced with growth hormones and genetically modified organisms still aggravate relations. Furthermore, creative efforts to resolve such disputes appear advisable. Producers in the American and European food industries believe their goods offer high value and safety. Nevertheless, consumers, particularly European consumers, express skepticism over the adequacy of industry practices and government regulation. Consumers are demanding more food safety assurances, yet trade treaty obligations require the nations also better harmonize product standards. Benign neglect of food standard harmonization could easily damage international relations because divergence in standards acts as a non-tariff trade barrier. Sustained creative effort to resolve these challenges appears advisable.
Environmental policy. Robert Field noted that both Europe and the United States have tried to mitigate the effects of air, water and soil pollution through legislative action with mixed results. Environmental protection through limit values has provided a common approach in the protection of air quality in both the United States (US) and the European Union (EU) through provisions of the Clean Air Act in the US and Air Quality Directives in the EU. However, in recent years, the main contrast of environmental protection has been the application of the precautionary principle. This allows for precautionary measures when an activity raises threats of harm even if cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically. In the European Union, phthalates have been banned from plastic products in order to protect children from exposure through toys to potential health impacts, including cancer. The US Environmental Protection Agency has not followed suit as risk assessments have not demonstrated a clear direct health impact. The approach of the EU and US to climate change has until recent times shown a similar divergence. The control of carbon dioxide levels will continue to be the main area of transatlantic environmental debate. A common approach is important as environmental standards are closely tied with trade and the standard of living. For nations to change their behavior actions will need to be set within an agreed international framework. Meeting the climate challenge will require a global policy that includes the US and EU.
Conclusion. While all recognized the rocky road ahead, Terri Rittenburg spoke for all when she expressed hope and optimism in the transatlantic relationship: "Considering the importance of the US-EU relationship, it is imperative that we find more effective ways of working out our disagreements. As an observer, I note frequent trade disputes, particularly over agricultural products. As friends and allies, I hope we can develop better ways of dealing with these issues to sustain this excellent partnership and benefit all of us."Bruton agreed, noting that, "We can invest in the future of the transatlantic relationship by encouraging academic mobility between the U.S. and the EU through programs like Erasmus Mundus and ATLANTIS. It is students like those I met at the University of Wyoming who will build on our actions today in the world of tomorrow, and we must prepare them to do it together." EUSA can facilitate such interaction. Recognizing the "large and diverse transatlantic membership" of EUSA, Bruton was impressed with how scholarly interest in transatlantic affairs is thriving, as is the interest section.
Stephanie Anderson is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Wyoming and Co-Chair of the EU as Global Actor Interest Section
- Nineteen of the EU member states are also members of NATO. Of these countries, sixteen appoint a single "double-hatted" person to represent the country's interest both at the NAC and the PSC.
EUSA Public Policy Interest Section Essay
Food Security and the Future of CAP Reform
There are conflicting forces supporting and opposing further reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) as global food supply experiences a more turbulent period, leading to renewed concerns about food security. This was a discourse that shaped the original formulation of the CAP in the 1950s, given vivid memories of food shortages in Europe in the immediate post-war period and the context of the Cold War. Those postwar conditions led to fears about interruptions of supplies of food by sea. One response was to use the CAP to move Europe as far as possible towards self-sufficiency in relation to temperate zone goods. In this connection, it is interesting to note that in 2007, the EU exported €75bn of produce and imported €77.3bn. France's trade surplus with non-EU members was €8.3bn. In other words, given that Europe cannot produce tropical zone products, it now has a surplus of temperate zone products with France—a major agricultural exporter.
The European Commission's current 'Health Check' reforms are not intended to bring about a wide-ranging reform of the CAP of the type initiated in 2003 but rather are seen as a "tidying up" exercise prior to a renewed discussion of more fundamental reforms in the period up to 2013. From the perspective of the Commission, the aim of the "Health Check" is to assess the experience of the 2003 CAP reform, and to introduce adjustments that simplify and increase the effectiveness of the policy, allowing it to respond to market opportunities and face new challenges such as climate change. As farm prices rise, there are increased pressures for the removal of subsidies, but forceful arguments are also being made for their perpetuation in a changed global food market. The discourse of food security has returned to the fore.
There has been a significant shift in the supply and demand balance in the global food market in the last year. On the demand side, as emerging countries such as China become richer, the composition of the diet of their populations changes in a way that leads to more consumption of grain. For example, as people eat more meat, more animal feed is needed for livestock. As they drink more beer, more barley needs to be supplied to produce the beer. This shift in demand is not likely to go into reverse: rather, the trend is likely to continue.
On the supply side, the quantity of food crops being produced has been adversely affected by growing demands for bio-fuels, although questions have been raised about whether they are as environmentally advantageous as has been claimed. Supporters of bio-fuels would claim that they have been treated as scapegoats for more fundamental problems of food supply. Adverse weather conditions have affected grain production in some countries, e.g., a long-term drought reduced production in Australia. Some would argue that these extreme weather events reflect longer-term changes in climate triggered by global warming.
Whatever the root causes, the consequence of reduced supply and increased demand has been increasing and volatile prices, although there have been actual shortages of food in some developing countries, sometimes exacerbated by hoarding to take advantage of price rises. One policy response in, for example, Argentina has been to impose export taxes on food with the stated objective of ensuring domestic supply, a policy that has encountered substantial resistance from farmers there. In principle such policies should open up new third country export markets for EU farmers and further weaken the case for maintaining export subsidies which the EU has provisionally agreed to phase out by 2013. The "dumping" of subsidized goods in third world markets has been particularly damaging to local farmers who have often been unable to compete with the imported produce.
The defenders of CAP subsidies argue that Europe needs to aim for self-sufficiency in food as far as practicable and that subsidies are required to ensure that production within Europe is maximized. There is a revival of old style "productionist" arguments that had been somewhat displaced by an emphasis on the environmental costs and benefits of farming in recent years. Those who consider that subsidies should be phased out counter these arguments by pointing out that a tighter global supply-demand balance should lead to an improvement in farm profits, although farm organisations claim that improved commodity prices are offset by increased input prices, particularly for fertilizers and fuels. Nevertheless, the available evidence suggests that farm incomes are increasing, albeit from a low base.
Opponents of subsidies argue that the analogy often made with energy security is a false one as in that sector there is a problem of monopolistic suppliers, particularly of gas. This is not the case in food. If food prices rise because of shortage, more marginal land could be brought into production (assisted in the EU by the end of set aside) or efficiencies in production could be sought through enhanced technology and improved agronomic techniques. In any case, a general subsidy such as the Single Farm Payment (SFP) is a blunt instrument in achieving particular policy goals.
Nevertheless, the arguments about food security have had an influence on decision-makers and have been taken up in recent speeches by member state politicians and also by the EU Farm Commissioner, Mariann Fischer Boel. A study of food security as part of a broader paper on food policy by the Strategy Unit of the UK Cabinet Office (Cabinet Office, 2008) takes a balanced approach to the risks, but does point to the short-term vulnerability of modern global distribution systems to any disruption in supply.
The proportion of EU spending devoted to the CAP was as high as 81 per cent in the mid-1980s. More recently, it has been declining slowly, from 49 per cent of overall allocated expenditure in 2003 to 46.7 per cent in 2006 and is expected to fall further by 2013. France alone receives just over 20 per cent of all expenditure. The ten states that joined in 2004 received 9 per cent of overall CAP funding in 2006, including over a quarter of the Rural Development Budget. Their share will increase as subsidies are phased in. Some have very small farm sectors, e.g., Malta, but those with large farm sectors, e.g., Poland, are likely to resist radical reform.
The CAP Health Check. The proposals put forward in November 2007 by the Commission were intentionally modest, representing an extension of the logic of the 2003 reforms. The key elements were:
- More use of "decoupling," i.e. separating subsidies from production. France has made particular use of continued coupling.
- Move to SFPs based on hectares rather than historical payments.
- Increase in compulsory modulation, i.e., shift of money from farm support to the "second pillar" of rural development.
- Permanent removal of the "set aside" obligation which has been temporarily suspended.
- Removal of almost all remaining intervention and supply control measures.
- Export refunds not to be extended beyond 2013.
- "Capping" payments to larger farms, but this would have hit Britain and Germany and has been dropped, but these farms will be subject to a higher modulation rate.
The Health Check will have to be finalized at the end of 2008 under the French presidency. If it is not, it is likely to be subject to the co-decision procedure once the Lisbon Treaty comes into force which will make reform more complicated. The French presidency will probably try to get a deal in November as it can then include some direct reference to the Health Check in its final Summit conclusions. This would provide wording that would support French ambitions in the 2009 review of the EU budget to maintain high levels of CAP spending.
Obstacles to reform. Farmers' organizations are well organized and politically skilled. They have deployed food security arguments very successfully to reinforce the case for subsidy. Their members are still highly reliant on subsidies which often account for most of farm profits. Germany has a CSU Bavarian farm minister sympathetic to farm interests. Consumer and taxpayer interests in CAP reform are more diffuse and sporadic. Nevertheless, there is pressure within the EU to reduce spending on farm subsidies to make available funds to spend on research and development and innovation which is seen as more central to Europe's economic future. The battle over the budget will therefore take center place again.
France and the European Commission have clashed over the future of farming with the European Commission dismissing French calls to curtail food imports as self-defeating and backward-looking. "Autarky is not the future. We are not aiming at a closed market where we are self-sufficient," a spokesman for farm commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel stated. French farm minister Michel Barnier favours domestic production and requiring imports to match EU welfare needs - moves the spokesman said would invite retaliation: "It is not in our interests to become a fortress. If we erect new barriers, so will our trade partners," he said. "We are a major trader in agricultural products. We are the biggest exporter and importer of farm products in the world. What we believe in is trade. We are seeing increasing exports of our high-quality food products."
New protectionism. French proposals on "European preference" that are expected to be circulated to agriculture ministers next month have been gaining support. The notion that developing countries should adhere to the same standards as European producers might seem fair in terms of a "level playing field," but they do not have the resources or expertise to meet them and hence would face a major barrier in the European market. For many of these countries agricultural exports offer the best route to prosperity which would then enable them to import more manufactured goods. Nevertheless, the French position has considerable political support as EU farmers complain that their costs are increasing because of increased environmental and animal welfare rules that the rest of the world do not have to meet. After a recent vocal campaign by cattle farmers, the Commission restricted imports of beef from Brazil, where foot-and-mouth disease is rampant.
The French view, as put forward by Michel Barnier, is that "What we are now witnessing in the world is the consequence of too much free-market liberalism. We can't leave feeding people to the mercy of the market. We need a public policy, a means of stabilisation and intervention." This reveals the fundamental difference between British and French perspectives. Britain has a history of liberalism, France one of state intervention and protectionism. From a British perspective, the market is an effective way of transmitting consumer preferences through the price mechanism. The market should be able to supply food like any commodity. The only qualification is the effect that weather fluctuations have on production. But this does not justify an elaborate apparatus of subsidy and protection, rather the development of new and innovative mechanisms for offsetting risk.
Conclusion. Recent increases in food prices have at the same time reduced the argument for non-targeted farm subsidies, but also revived food security arguments. We are unlikely to see the revival of largely discarded policy instruments such as intervention storage. It was costly, there were always problems about disposing of the accumulated surpluses without disrupting markets, and some products deteriorated over time, leading (for example) to the sale of "ageing" butter to the former Soviet Union. France is focusing rather on taking a hard line against substantial tariff reductions in the Doha Development Round and perhaps even removing agriculture from the ambit of the World Trade Organization altogether. It is also likely to insist on the continuation of the SFP in some form.
Through the strategic vision and tactical skill of Franz Fischler as farm commissioner, the 2003 Mid Term Review was used to deliver a substantial reform of the CAP (Swinnen, forthcoming). Current circumstances, in particular the suspension of the Doha Round, do not provide such a window of opportunity and to some extent productionist discourses of food security have gained ground over those newer discourses focused on food quality and safety, quality products and animal welfare, encompassed in the concept of multi-functionality. Major reform is not likely in the next five years, but budgetary pressures will not go away.
Wyn Grant is Professor of Politics at the University of Warwick
- Regular updates on the CAP are available on the author's blog: http://commonagpolicy.blogspot.com
- Cabinet Office Strategy Unit 2008. Food: an analysis of the issues http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/strategy/work_areas/food_policy.aspx
- Swinnen, J. ed. Forthcoming. The Perfect Storm? The Political Economy of the Fischler Reforms of the Common Agricultural Policy. Brussels: Centre for European Policy Studies.
Sam-Sang Jo. European Myths: Resolving the Crises in the European Community/European Union. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 2007.
Sam-Sang Jo proposes an analysis of the resolution of crises in the EU by focusing on the "why" rather than on the "how." He does so in particular by emphasizing the central role of myths rather than interests as the "stanza" of regulation in the European political system. Through its founding myths (peace, reconstruction...), defined as unconscious structures based on shared historical experiences wich lead elites to reach compromises by going beyond immediate advantages and differences of interests, the European Union is seen as capable of regulating its conflicts and, consequently, of enforcing the choice of more and more integration.
Jo thus synthetises the history of European integration as "a narrative of crises generated and crises resolved" (p. 2) and deepens this hypothesis through studying four empirical cases: the empty chair crisis (1965-1966); the monetary and oil crisis of the 1970s; the British budgetary dispute in the 1980s; the rejection of the Maastricht Treaty by Denmark in 1992. Each time, a solution was found to solve the crisis, a solution which in turn actually allowed the EU to deepen. This leads Jo to the the mixed conclusion that although the EU has a strong and effective problem-solving culture, the slow decay of its regulating myths put the future of the European system in doubt.
More generally, Jo's approach constitutes an attempt to cover a perceived gap in mainstream theories of European integration. Intergovernmentalism and its focus upon bargains between governments to explain the permanent dynamics of European integration is seen as too static. Functionalism and transactionalism are seen as providing more dynamic explanations, but do so in a linear fashion which does not match the actual path followed by European integration. Highlighting the underlying frameworks of meaning influencing political choices is thus presented as a means of taking into account both periods of momentum and times of latence. From a theoretical point of view, Jo claims to share strong proximity with contructivism, "the most interesting development in integration theory" (p. 19). Indeed, like other constructivists, Jo seeks to understand institutions (formal and non-formal) which contribute to forming social interests and roles, social learning and the dissemination of norms.
As such, this book provides a bold overview of the overall logic of European integration which contains a welcome attempt to break out of the the traditional divide between rational and non-rational motives for political action, as well as the lack of scientific dialogue this has inspired. However, Jo's toolbox remains mainly that of international relations. References to potentially useful other fields (political sociology, political communication, sociology of nationalism, psychology) are scarce or absent. Myths are described more as items of an history of ideas than as resources for mobilization, dissemination and legitimization. Do "the publicly held beliefs – that is European myths – of the European leaders who are experiencing the crisis" (p. 59), studied through "big texts" really represent the decisive pattern pf politics in the EU? Jo suggests links between ideational factors and cumulative decisions towards further integration using some convincing evidence by identifying regularities in different temporal and socio-cultural contexts. However, the role of myths for actors beyond the top elites, their effects on the masses, their ability to evolve in order to take on board modifcations, and mechanisms of collective learning are explained far less. The relationship between myths and historical shared experiences (for example the importance of Rome and Christiendom for contemporary political practice) is not proven.
In summary, Jo's book is a stimulant for those interested in pursuing the exploration of Europe's integrative dynamics through examining its communicative and symbolic side. Where it succeeds less is in articulating ambitious theoretical frameworks to empirical research that reflects a more representative sample of all the levels of European governance.
François Foret, Université Libre de Bruxelles
Sergio Fabbrini. Compound Democracies: Why the United States and Europe are Becoming Similar. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2007.
In his new book, Compound Democracies, Sergio Fabbrini conducts a systematic and theoretical comparison of the political systems of the United States and the European Union. Other theorists have considered comparing these two political entities but have stumbled over their differences in political development and their unique qualities and have shied away from significant comparisons. Fabbrini suggests that emphasizing the exceptional politics of the US and the European Union obstructs "systemic comparison" (p. 204) with other democratic states, leaving studies theoretically weak. He states, "comprehension requires comparison, and comparison is only possible if analytical criteria are available to integrate those specificities into common typological families" (p. 204). Although studying the EU as a unique case has produced much valuable information about its policies, Fabbrini argues that using the compound democracy model would allow a theoretical and more constructive comparison of the US and the EU and facilitate a better understanding of the functioning of both political systems.
Fabbrini argues that "the EU and the US are similar because they are two different species of the same political genus: the compound democracy (p.3). He has revived the term compound democracy from Madison and the Federalist Papers, and uses it as a theoretical framework to systematically compare the political systems of the US and the EU. Compound democracies have both interstate (confederal, intergovernmental) and supra-state (federal, supranational) structures. Their complex governmental structures encourage compromise, with their established systems of separation and diffusion of powers, vertically and horizontally. Fabbrini demonstrates that both the US and the EU have these characteristics. He provides a thorough analysis of the governing structures and the historical development of democracy in the US and in the EU, using the historical-institutional approach at the macro level and looking at the big picture to compare general features of the two polities. Fabbrini is well qualified to conduct this comparison because he has a thorough knowledge of both American and European politics, and his use of the comparative method to analyze the two systems provides a fresh approach to studying the development of the EU. His analysis of these two multi-level polities with their diffused powers also contributes to the study of democracy.
Fabbrini's use of the compound democracy model provides a novel way to compare the EU and the US. He is able not only to compare the similarities of the two systems, but also to analyze their differences more systematically. Nevertheless, certain problems remain with his model, and Fabbrini sometimes pushes his comparison of the two systems further than he can justify. Despite similarities, the "states" in the US are hard to compare to the "nation/states" that make up the EU. The EU's problem with the democratic deficit is another example of a difficult hurtle for his paradigm to justify, and will certainly provoke much discussion about the validity of his comparison of the EU to the US. Nevertheless, Fabbrini's original use of the compound democracy model to compare the US and the EU provides a new way to understand the EU's future direction more systematically.
Fabbrini's use of the compound democracy paradigm allows a more theoretical comparison of politics in the EU and the US than previous explanations. Because the book grounds the discussion of the EU's development in a comparative framework, and provides well-reasoned arguments for comparing the EU to the US, it enriches EU studies beyond just policy-making and enlargement. Its comparative perspective permits a clearer understanding not only of the challenges facing multi-unit and multi-level democracies, but also of EU's operating logic. This book is an important addition to the literature on the European Union as it proposes a more theoretically grounded comparative focus advancing the field of EU studies.
Eleanor E. Zeff, Drake University
Vivien Schmidt. Democracy in Europe: The EU and National Polities. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2008.
From the prolific pen of Vivien Schmidt comes another ambitious treatment of European politics, this time focused on the European Union's "democratic deficit." This volume centers on three ideas. First, the EU should not be compared normatively to national democracies, since it is a novel form of organization called a "regional state." The EU is characterized by "shared sovereignty, variable boundaries, composite identity, highly compound governance, and fragmented democracy split between government by and of the people at the national level and governance for and with the people at the EU level" (9, original emphasis). There is no European demos for the EU to be governed by or of, so we cannot ask it to be more responsive to standard electoral mechanisms. Moreover, the EU institutions are so thoroughly checked-and-balanced that we should not be overly concerned about a lack of accountability. The EU governs for the people in the sense of providing welfare-enhancing cooperation, and with the people—or rather, parenthetically, "(or at least some of the people)" (29)—through various consultative mechanisms. The upshot of this first idea is that the democratic deficit does not lie in the institutional processes of the EU itself.
The second idea is that the EU is nonetheless altering national-level democracies, and that the democratic deficit arises at this level. Problems occur especially where there is a poor "fit" between national institutions and "Europeanization" pressures. Given the EU's compound nature, misfit is sharpest with the simplest, most centralized polities, like Britain and France. In these countries the EU ensures that national democracy can neither work nor be justified in its old practices and terms. While more compound polities like Germany and Italy have delegated the same powers to the EU, their politicians and citizens were accustomed to shared, negotiated governance, and encounter less direct challenges to their practices and ideals of democracy.
Yet Schmidt does not quite locate the democratic deficit in an EU that undercuts certain national democratic processes. "The central problem for the EU," she writes, "is not so much the changes in national democratic practices per se but that they have gone unrecognized and unaccepted" (36). The third and predominant idea in the book is that democracy depends on certain kinds of discourse to justify institutions and policies. The EU's problem is not that politics in an EU-bound Britain or France are no longer democratic in some aggregate sense, but that national-level discourse has not adapted to justify the changed landscape to citizens. Especially in France and Britain, "national leaders have bungled their communicative role" (4). French leaders have placed first emphasis on the notion that the EU has enhanced French power, without ever recognizing its other effects. British leaders have generally sought to deny that much has changed. In both cases—and to lesser degrees across all EU countries—elites have not updated their communicative discourse to their altered polities.
The book provides neatly stylized overviews of a great range of institutions, policies, and national and EU history, and insightfully connects the burgeoning literatures on Europeanization and democracy. At a broader level I suspect Schmidt might accept that it does a better job at posing important questions than in answering them in a satisfying way.
On its first move—shifting analysis about problems in EU democracy to the national level—the book allows the reader to wonder just how much Schmidt wants or needs to insist that the EU institutions themselves are acceptably democratic. In order to direct our attention to problems in national discourse, she does not need to insist that there are no other problems in EU democracy. Her language alternates between rather absolute claims that the EU system really is democratic and more relative claims that the biggest problems in EU democracy lie at the national level. Either set of claims can fit with her main argument, but they have quite different implications for how we think about democracy in Europe overall.
This ambiguity is related to the project's incomplete normative framework. If it effectively critiques many arguments that the EU system itself is undemocratic, the book does not elaborate a positive vision of what democracy should look like in a regional state. The passage in the conclusion that comes closest to doing so seems to leave us in an impasse. It admits that most moves that would encourage more consultation with the people—one of the more obvious normative recommendations implied by this analysis—could also stymie the effectiveness of EU decision-making for the people (270).
On the more analytic side of the argument, if the book's focus on the importance of discourse is persuasive to this reader, it does not tell us what kind of discourse will solve the EU's problems, nor why we would expect today's leaders to address that difficult task more seriously. In sum, the book adds up to an admirable breakdown of some of Europe's democratic problems. In terms of what could or will be done about those problems, though, we are left with a mix of optimism that the EU is (or can be) democratic but pessimism that Europeans may not ever get that message.
Craig Parsons, University of Oregon
Call for Teaching Workshops
The European Union Studies Association invites proposals for teaching workshops on Europe and the European Union in connection with its 2009 Eleventh Biennial International Conference in Los Angeles.
The teaching workshops are scheduled for Thursday, 23 April 2009 from 8:30 to 12:30 am and Saturday, 25 April 2009 from 2 pm to 6 pm. Workshops may be planned for two hours or four hours and may be offered on Thursday as well as Saturday. The purpose of these workshops is to provide participants with tools, methods, materials, sources and approaches to teaching the European Union. They should be pragmatic and concrete in nature..
Applications for teaching workshops should be sent to email@example.com in PDF format. The deadline is September 30, 2008. Applications should include the following information:.
- Target audience: We encourage teaching workshops designed to attract broad and/or diverse audiences including high school, community college, and university teachers (undergraduate and graduate levels).
- Maximum participant size of the workshop
- Preferred time slot
- Detailed workshop description: Please include a preliminary teaching plan with timetable, subjects, methods, and short reading list. Please describe the expected benefits of workshop for participants, including materials, concrete deliverables and skills that they can expect to use in the classroom
- Workshop teachers are encouraged to consider a wide range of active and experimental tools, including (but not limited to): use of case studies, simulated negotiations and role playing, IT/multimedia and teaching the EU, integration of visual and audio sources, use of primary sources, field and service learning, role of languages in EU studies, team-teaching, etc.
- Workshop may address issues such as: classroom activities and techniques, syllabus development, student’s evaluation, curriculum development and program assessment, etc.
- List of needed didactical equipment
- Workshop budget: Please detail teachers’ remuneration, cost of equipment, cost of materials, etc.
- CV(s) of responsible teacher(s)
You will be notified of the Program Committee’s decision regarding your teaching workshop proposal by December 15, 2008. Please address all questions about the proposal process to or by telephone to 412.648.7635.
How to Support the European Union Studies AssociationLifetime Membership
- $1500 for all our materials, for life, and credit for a one-time tax-deductible contribution of $500
- EUSA Grants and Scholarships Fund to support EU-related scholarship, the EUSA prizes, and travel to the biennial EUSA Conference
- Ernst Haas Memorial Fund for EU Studies to honor the seminal work of Ernst B. Haas and support dissertation research in EU studies
- To build the EU-related library collection. $150 / year
- Free conference access for up to 4 graduate students.
- One free 1-page advertisement/announcement in the Review per year. $1,000 / year
- 25% conference fee reduction for up to 4 graduate students.
- 50% reduction on one 1/2-page advertisement in the Review per year.
Your gifts are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by U.S. tax law. Include a contribution with your membership renewal, or contact the EUSA Office to make a contribution. Call 412.648.7635 or .