The notion of the European Union being an exceptional international actor is well established in the literature and dates from the very inception of ‘Europe’ as being a continental peace project. In today’s literature, while a number of variations on the theme exist, the dominant model is that of the Union as a ‘normative power’. As initially defined and conceptualised by Ian Manners, this argued that Europe wielded power ‘…of an ideational nature characterized by common principles Read more [...]
Senior EU officials have just released a blueprint for another great leap forward in European integration, to be discussed by all 27 heads of state and government at this week's summit meeting. Perhaps not surprisingly, this blueprint says little about the EU's growing democratic deficit. Notwithstanding the urgency of the current crisis, it's now high time for Europe's citizens to cry "no more integration without more representation," as I argue here. If there's enough time to deliberate over technical Read more [...]
The so-called European Foreign Ministers Group on the Future of Europe has just released its report. Although the group was launched and chaired by German foreign minister Guido Westerwelle, its report was not entirely a German product. As the Auswaertiges Amt explains, "Alongside Foreign Minister Westerwelle, the Foreign Ministers of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain take part. France’s Foreign Minister was represented by a personal envoy. Read more [...]
I’ve posted some thoughts on this on Crooked Timber, here.
by Agustin Ruiz Robledo, Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Granada (Spain) and Visiting Scholar at the UCD School of Law 2011-12 The pace of politics and life in the twenty-first century is so fast that the referendum of May 31 seems to have been held a year ago and is no longer an issue worth talking about. However, much the same happens in cycling races, the fact of winning a stage does not mean that there are no consequences for the overall result, quite the contrary. Therefore, Read more [...]
Whatever medium or longer terms plans Chancellor Merkel has for the European Union, we are undoubtedly embarked on yet another treaty-reform journey. The immediate eurozone emergency may or may not require treaty change (one can only imagine that the Council legal services are engaged in a desperate battle to avoid that) but the dye has been cast on yet another round of treaty negotiation. With President Van Rompuy offering some ‘building blocks’ on this at the forthcoming June European Council Read more [...]
Regardless of one's views on the fiscal treaty, this post-referendum analysis by my UCD colleague Andy Storey is a sobering reminder that a treaty focused on government debt is unlikely to resolve a crisis sparked principally by irresponsible lending and borrowing by private banks. On the other hand, bond markets (and German taxpayers & parliamentarians) are now hyper-sensitive to government debt across Europe, so regardless of the sources of the current crisis, it is unrealistic to expect that Read more [...]