ACDIS Swords and Ploughshares
"Can NATO Survive Afghanistan?" (Vol. XVI / No. 2 / Summer 2008)
Abstract: Since 2003, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has led the operation of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) to “establish conditions in which Afghanistan can enjoy a representative government and self-sustaining peace and security.” However, ISAF has struggled to bring stability to Afghanistan, prompting concerns about its chances for meeting those objectives. Moreover, senior U.S. officials referred in spring 2008 to a possible “existential crisis” for NATO, as a result of tensions within the alliance over member countries’ troop-level and mission task commitments to ISAF. This collection of articles examines the significant challenges facing NATO as it conducts its first mission outside the Euro-Atlantic arena in its nearly sixty-year history.
"US-EU-Russia: New Strategic Dynamics after Bush" (Vol. XVII / No. 1 / Winter 2008-9)
Abstract: This project sought to examine the complex relations among the United States, European Union, and Russia at a juncture when circumstances suggested such analysis was particularly warranted—with the conclusion of George W. Bush’s eight years as US president, following the ascension to the Russian presidency by Dmitry Medvedev after Vladimir Putin’s eight years in that office (albeit with Putin’s transition to prime minister portending a less seismic shift in Russian policy direction than the US case signals). These changes have implications for the immediate form and tone of US-EU-Russia relations.In addition to offering a retrospective analysis of the post-cold war period and especially the past decade, this collection of articles seeks to understand and contextualize a series of recent developments that have brought the uneasy triangle of relations between the US, EU, and Russia into stark relief. Those developments include Kosovo’s declaration of independence in February 2008; the August 2008 Russia-Georgia conflict; US proposals to place missile defense systems in the Czech Republic and Poland; and ongoing disputes over natural gas that have disrupted flows from Russian energy suppliers to Ukraine and other countries of Europe.
"Global Security, Climate Change, and the Arctic" (Vol. XVII / No. 3 / Fall 2009)
Abstract: For policymakers and analysts alike, the contemporary Arctic presents a particularly acute convergence of compelling problems and opportunities related to global security, foreign affairs, climate change, environmentalism, international law, energy economics, and the rights of indigenous populations. The goals of this publication are two-fold: to provide thoughtful analysis of recent developments in the Arctic both from scientific and geopolitical perspectives; and to offer careful and informed assessments of how evolving conditions in the Arctic might impact the broader global security framework and relations between the international actors involved, not to mention the region’s inhabitants and ecosystem.
Publications by EUC Faculty
EUC Faculty Member Works on Current EU Events
The French Left And The 2009 European Elections.
Belden Fields. Reproduced by permission with thanks to Dr. Fields and the Public i
- Domestic politics or EU influence: what is driving Turkey’s constitutional reforms?
Author: Levi Armlovich
Publication Date: May 30, 2014
Abstract: Since its current constitution was promulgated in 1982 Turkey has passed 17 amendment packages with more than 100 individual changes made to the constitution. Most of this constitutional reform has happened since the European Union (EU) announced that Turkey had achieved candidate status for eventual membership in the Union in 1999. Many scholars attribute Turkey’s democratization, of which constitutional reform is an important part, to the EU’s decision to open its doors to Turkey. However other scholars argue that reform is driven primarily by Turkey’s domestic political parties, and that while the EU plays a role in Turkey’s reform process, that reform is secondary to the changing domestic political landscape. In this thesis I examine the constitutional reforms passed in 2001, 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2010 in order to address the question of whether EU influence or domestic politics is the primary driver of constitutional change in Turkey. I will demonstrate that while both lines of argument are true, each has its limits. During the 1999-2005 period the EU served as the primary driver of constitutional change in Turkey, but by 2005 Turkey had enacted the majority of the constitutional reforms required by the EU, and thus post-2005 domestic political parties were the primary drivers of further constitutional change.
- The perceptions of a civil society organization towards anti-trafficking policy development in the European Union: a case study
Author: Michelle Asbill
Publication Date: January 16, 2014
Abstract: This thesis presents a case study consisting of nine semi-structured interviews of volunteers of a civil society organization (CSO) engaged in anti-trafficking work in Athens, Greece in order to examine the volunteers’ perceptions of how the organization’s work relates to anti-trafficking policy development at the European Union (EU) level. The results indicated that volunteers were strongly committed to the work of their organization and half of the participants believed their work could influence EU anti-trafficking policy. Yet overall, engaging EU policy makers remained a secondary issue, as achieving the mission and vision of the organization was the primary concern. This case study is a first step in better understanding the EU-CSO anti-trafficking policy development relationship and offers valuable and practical insights for EU officials and policy makers, as well as the leadership of the CSO.
- Factors influencing Sweden’s changing stance on neutrality
Author: Bergen Bassett
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Abstract: Sweden’s position on neutrality has changed over the past 25 years. This evolution has been prompted and supported by a variety of domestic and international events, and the way in which the political elites responded to each event. These events started with the Swedish financial crisis in the late 1980s, and continued with the collapse of the Soviet Union and Sweden’s entrance into the European Union (EU). International crises, such as the Kosovo war and the September 11th terrorist attacks, have also impacted the concept and role of Swedish neutrality. Swedish neutrality was more than simply a philosophy on which the foreign and defense policies were built, it was also an integral part of the Swedish national identity. In order to understand how and why Swedish neutrality has evolved, various contributing layers were explored. For this reason, this research examined the definition of neutrality, how neutrality became a component of Swedish national identity, themes pertaining to the Swedish political process, important election issues, political parties, and voting trends before exploring contributing domestic and international factors. After the foundational background was established, in-depth investigation and analysis identified the most significant domestic and international events and pressures that ultimately influenced Sweden’s changing stance on neutrality.
- The effect of UNHCR operations in the development of Turkey's asylum framework
Author: Natalie Cartwright
- Publication Date: May 24, 2013
Abstract: Turkey is increasingly occupying an important position within the world and more so within migration studies because of its triple role, as a sending, receiving, and transit country. This text addresses Turkey’s changing position within world orders in regards to migration and asylum concerns and how UNHCR operations have affected Turkey’s development of its asylum framework. Due to Turkey’s geographical location at the heart of major migratory networks, it continues to strictly observe the 1951 Geneva Convention through the lens of its Geographical Limitation. This limitation is central to Turkey’s current asylum system with the separation of Europeans from non-Europeans ensuing in the application of differential treatment by which only Europeans are eligible for the granting of full fledged refugee status. One of Turkey’s most recent milestones is its successful completion of the draft process for its first ever law on asylum - The Law on Foreigners and International Protection, a significant portion of Turkey’ s quest of reforming its asylum framework through policy. Both the EU and UNHCR were able to exert their influence on Turkish officials throughout the draft law process. Their influential impact will be addressed through the phenomena of UNHCR-ization and Europeanization respectively. The EU’s power significantly stems from EU-Turkey accession negotiations while UNHCR has become influential because of its identity as the mandated UN agency for the international protection of asylum seekers and refugees. The position UNHCR occupies in Turkey is valuable in assessing the influence an international organization can have on the development of a nation’s national policy and the potential power gain, whether intentional or unintentional, in carrying out the respective policy. UNHCR’s influence within Turkey’s asylum system is observable in the organization’s increasing operations. These operations include the processing of asylum claims, determining refugee status, and resettling refugees out of Turkey. The EU is an important actor for Turkey’s asylum reform process, but they are not the only actor enacting change and they might not even be the most influential actor. The Turkey-UNHCR relationship, especially in regards to providing services of international protection to asylum seekers and refugees is worth further analysis.
- Three "Eurocities": objectives for cross-border cooperation at the Hispano-Luso border
Author: Adam Heinz
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Abstract: For almost sixty years, the European Union (EU) and its member states have cultivated the process of integration. At the geographical “front lines” of this process, local and regional actors form State-sanctioned, supranationally-enabled cross-border regions (CBRs) while carrying out various pragmatic cross-border cooperation (CBC) projects to address shared objectives in the midst of disparate societies, economies and governance structures. This research project investigates the objectives of three such initiatives at the border of Spain and Portugal, the unique but overlooked “Eurocity” projects, whose lead actors make bold claims of representing the “second generation” of CBC, constructing “eurocitizens” in pursuit of the “New Europe”. A content analysis of project objectives within press, websites and official project documentation suggests that local and regional Eurocity actors pursue varied objectives related to the economy, governance and society primarily as a means of improving the implicated border economies. Objectives related to enhancing localized policymaking authority or re-uniting a “submerged” people appear to play only a secondary role at best, commenting on the multi-level governance (MLG), intergovernmentalism and “Europe of the Regions” paradigms. Findings address current geographic and scalar gaps in “border studies” scholarship and raise significant questions surrounding the effects of such cooperation and its future vis-à-vis the current European financial and sovereign debt crises.
- From civil society to the level of politics: the evolution of narratives about Muslim immigrants in Italy
Author: Allyce Husband
Publication Date: May 24, 2013
Abstract: In the European Union (EU), Islamophobia and hostile, racist discourse about Muslim individuals is no longer a characteristic of solely the far-right. Politicians and institutions from all parts of the political spectrum demonstrate an increased willingness to politicize everyday cultural encounters with Muslim immigrants that influences the social reality in which they live. This analysis examines discourse about Muslim immigrants in Italian society and the dominant narratives, or ways of thinking and talking about Muslims, that this discourse creates. Specifically, this analysis explores the characteristics of media and political discourse that drive dominant narratives about Muslim immigrants in Italy from the micro level of civil society to the macro, institutional level where they are transformed into policy proposal narratives that marginalize Muslim individuals. I maintain that narratives about Muslim immigrants that originate from the micro level of civil society are reflected in policy proposal narratives at the macro level. Using the framework of a metanarrative analysis, two narratives, which are deemed the ‘their religious and cultural differences are a threat’ narrative and the ‘invasion and threat to public order’ narrative, are deconstructed to determine the ‘storylines’ from the news media and the ‘ideographs’ in political discourse of which they are constructed. The ‘storylines’ and ‘ideographs’ that fuel the dominant narratives are based heavily in language characterized by public order, security, preservation of traditions, and the historical value of the Italian city center. While the analysis identifies stories and political language around which discourse about Muslims in Italy is articled, it also provides a new way to think about discourse that marginalizes Muslim individuals and provides an opportunity for a more inclusive narrative to be put forth in EU society.
- United in diversity? A discourse analysis on the selective representation of the Islamic past in Spanish and Portuguese tourism
Author: Katie O'Dowd
Publication date: May 22, 2012
Abstract:A famous EU slogan claims that the supra-nation is “united in diversity,” but there exists a tension between this idea of an inclusive, diverse, cosmopolitan European identity and the lack of representation that Europe’s Islamic past receives in tourism websites. Being historically relevant, I have chosen to look at the representation of the Islamic past in Spanish and Portuguese tourism and have identified two comparable national monuments, the Alhambra in Granada, Spain and Silves Castle in Silves, Portugal. Both are located in what was the territory of al-Andalus, they were the last capital cities under Islamic control, and they are considered to be very well preserved national monuments today. Although these sites have the potential to legitimize and include Islam in European identity, the way in which they are represented promotes its exclusion. This exclusion can be seen in the way that tourism texts for the Alhambra and Silves castle cleanse and erase the Islamic past as a means to create a specific image of them as the ‘other.’ Because the majority of Spanish and Portuguese tourism comes from the European Union, I conclude that, paradoxically, the otherization of the Islamic past is a means to attract European tourists to the sites. Thus, as the EU attempts to be inclusive, its citizenry remains exclusive of the Islamic past.
- “L’éternel immigré”: identity and radicalism in France since 1962
Author: Brent Rosenstein
Publication Date: May 30, 2014
Abstract: Following the March 2012 terror attacks carried out by Mohammed Merah, a former friend of his placed more blame on French society for Merah’s radicalization than on any external force. This thesis attempts to address that claim by examining the identity crisis in France and its relationship to both Islamist and far-right radicalism. It argues that the lingering legacies of the Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962) have contributed greatly to the current identity crisis in France, especially with regards to the North African and Muslim communities, as well as the far-right. The political and social issues stemming from this crisis create an environment that is conducive to radicalization in terms of both Islamist and far-right extremism.
- Dueling shares: comparative EU-US corporate governance practices
Author: Whitney Taylor
Publication date: May 24, 2013
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to discover if and how the EU and US have approached dual-class shares and the one share-one vote principle in different manners. The EU and US have become thought leaders in security regulation and installing methods of best practice into their laws and corporate governance guidance. However, the EU and US have a history of divergent corporate governance systems and have legislated company law independently of each other. Looking at the oft-debated best practice of one share-one vote within this context would yield an interesting appraisal of where transatlantic views on corporate governance, whether divergences still exist, and why these divergences may persist. The research employed a qualitative methodology. It utilized both a review of securities laws and guidance that related specifically to shareholder voting rights as well as a formal case study. The case study aimed to consider how companies within the EU and US across different industries have used dual-class shares and approached the one share-one vote principle. Twenty-four firms were reviewed and analyzed against eight corporate governance provisions to add robustness to firm use of corporate governance best practices. Results show that dual-class shares do not necessitate disproportionate voting rights, single class stock can yield disproportionate voting rights among shareholders, and also, policymakers, scholars, and institutional investors have not reached consensus that one share-one vote is a best practice or that provisions that safeguard minority shareholder voting rights are in a firm’s best interest.
- Towards an ever closer union: with the Turks next door? Is Turkey the ideal energy partner for the EU?
Author: Lauren Turk
Publication date: May 22, 2012
Abstract: This thesis explores the respective energy policies of the European Union (EU) and Turkey, identifying common goals and external threats in order to entertain the hypothesis of whether Turkey is the ideal energy partner for the EU. The analysis supports the formation of a full energy partnership between the EU and Turkey, arguing that common goals will achieve greater fulfillment while common external threats will remain more effectively palliated through partnership. The policy level adjustments both for the EU and Turkey are recommended and justified in detail throughout. Overall, both the EU and Turkey prioritize diversifying their energy suppliers, combating climate change, and ensuring stable and competitive energy markets for their consumers. In the EU, energy demand is projected to rise by 11 %, while import dependence by 20 % by 2030 (to 71 %). Turkey remains 73% resource dependent overall, with a 97% dependence on natural gas specifically. Both rely on Russia to supply most of their natural gas, creating the mutual goal to diversify their suppliers and reduce the impact of one-sided dependence. The Nabucco Pipeline project has become the poster child of ‘pipeline politics’, or supply diversification affairs between the EU, Turkey, and resource supplier regions such as the Caspian, the Caucasus, and the Middle East. Nabucco also serves as the linchpin of the EU-Turkish energy partnership at present; this thesis will argue that further institutional measures are necessary, both within the EU and in Turkey, in order to equip this long-term project for success. Specifically, the EU needs to enable its members with a choice of suppliers through constructing pipeline interconnectors. This will further the notion of diversifying suppliers and reducing the dominance of Russian natural gas, as well as foster the formation of an integrated natural gas market. Turkey, on the other hand, should be allowed to open the Energy Chapter of accession negotiations and implement the energy related acquis communautaire. This will benefit business and investment relations in the energy sector, as well as promote more cohesive handling and maintenance of projects such as Nabucco between the EU and Turkey. With regard to combating climate change, both the EU and Turkey have made ambitious formal commitments. The EU employs the 202020 Strategy, aiming to reduce carbon emissions, improve energy efficiency, and incorporate renewable energy into the mix by 20 percent by 202020. Turkey enacted a National Climate Change Strategy in 2010 which aims to incorporate renewable energy by 30 percent by 2023, while also curbing emissions, improving efficiency and introducing clean coal technology. Within the EU, diverging performance among member states, due to different socio-political and economic factors, threatens the acquisition of 202020 targets. A means of bridging these gaps is to introduce EU-funded subsidies for countries whose renewable energy sectors have failed to thrive, and whose governments have not already introduced subsidies for renewable technology. This would involve making adjustments in the EU budget; currently, conceptualization of the EU’s 2014-2020 allocates 20 percent to fulfilling the goals of the 202020 Strategy. However, this thesis also argues that investment into the Turkish renewable energy sector would not only reinforce the EU’s status as a global leader against climate change, but also benefit the EU’s goals. Turkey has undergone great energy market liberalization efforts within the last decade, as well as interconnected its electricity network with the European network, ENTSO-E. As such, renewably produced electricity in Turkey could be transferred to bordering easterly EU countries, which happen to exist as the countries struggling to meet their renewable energy targets and embrace this market. Turkey itself possesses the world’s fifth largest geothermal capacity, eighth largest hydroelectric and significant wind and solar (situated in the Sun Belt). From an economic standpoint, creating an economy of scale for renewable energy will improve profit margins over time, as well as instill investor confidence both within the EU and Turkey. EU level internal subsidies will also serve as a means to this same end. As such, Turkey can serve as a catalyst to creating competitive and integrated natural gas and renewable energy markets within the region, better enabling the fulfillment of energy policy goals of the EU and Turkey. Finally, an energy based partnership with Turkey will improve the EU’s ability to influence, or exercise normative power, within the region. Through partnership with Turkey for projects such as the Nabucco pipeline, the EU has already been able to bridge gaps in its relations with countries in the Caspian region, the Middle East, and the Caucasus. Partnering with Turkey in a more comprehensive respect will also offer the EU an opportunity to reinforce its position as a normative leader against climate change. Turkey itself exercises a generally successful “Zero Problems with Neighbors” foreign policy approach, and hopes to become an energy hub in the region for trade. The EU already finances in part Turkey’s development through Pre-Accession funds to prepare Turkey to become ‘fit’ enough to join the EU, however investment directly pooled into the energy sector will allow Turkey to progress more quickly to become a more carbon-neutral economy as it grows. This remains in alignment with the EU’s foreign policy as well as its approach to combat climate change in part through assisting the environmentally responsible development of third countries. Finally, this thesis will argue that the EU must exercise a modified external governance policy towards Turkey in order to avert undesirable consequences. Turkey has shown interest to join the EU since its inception; however accession negotiations did not begin until 2005. At present, little progress has been made due to formally blocked chapters by select EU member states. Meanwhile, opening certain chapters, such as the Energy chapter, has become increasingly necessary, especially considering large-scale, long-term projects already underway. The coordination necessary to generate success for projects of this kind cannot be achieved with the current lack of political, institutional and regulatory harmonization in an energy context. Furthermore, the EU must tread carefully with regard to the stalled accession negotiations, as frozen negotiations could lead to a uniquely ‘frozen conflict’. With greatly vested interests, especially with regard to energy affairs, failed relations could undermine the EU’s efforts to diversify its energy suppliers and improve its relations with its external neighborhood. In particular, rejecting Turkey as a candidate country or continually preventing accession negotiations to move forward would tarnish the conditionality and credibility attached to EU candidate status, weakening the EU’s normative power, while also reinforcing negative stigmas of the EU turning the cold shoulder to Muslim populations. In particular, this would harm relations with the Caspian, Caucasus and Middle East; the very regions where the EU wishes to improve relations and create a symbiotic interdependence of energy supply through diversification. Supported by the aforementioned ideas, this thesis concludes that a full energy partnership between the EU and Turkey is in the best interest of both entities for energy and foreign policy related endeavors.
- Implosion in Greece? An analysis of the Greek debt crisis and its impacts on Europe and world markets
Author: Erik Vickstrom
Publication date: May 22, 2012
Abstract: This thesis seeks to address the impact of the Greek debt crisis on the stability of the euro and Eurozone, and the best solutions to the crisis. The chapters of this study explore currency unions in theory and practice, the operational components of the Eurozone, fiscal policy and its importance in Eurozone maintenance, and provide an overview of the events leading up to the Greek debt crisis. It analyzes strategies implemented so far to solve the crisis, looks at shifts in interest rates on Greek debt bonds, and performs a comparative analysis of previous currency unions that failed in an attempt to draw lessons from those examples. The study provides evidence that the current tools utilized to stabilize Greece are unsustainable over time, and if Germany does not provide adequate aid, Greece will further default on its debt, which will lead to significant implications for the Eurozone in the future. The global financial crisis of 2008 was extremely detrimental to the financial and economic well-being of countries, organizations, and individuals worldwide. Those reaping the benefits of an economic boom suddenly found the world in economic turmoil, with the downward spiral of financial markets forcing many to question the stability the longevity of the crisis. Since late 2009, conservative investors have expressed their fears that a sovereign debt crisis will develop within Europe, and put the future of the Eurozone at risk. While increases in sovereign debt load have been most pronounced in only a few Eurozone member nations, they are becoming increasingly problematic for the currency union as a whole. The European Union continues to call on Greece to implement austerity measures in order to reduce debt and cut spending. Past measures to counter the debt iii crisis have focused on providing the country with multi-billion euro bailout packages in exchange for implementing austerity. The majority of Greek citizens continue to publicly reject these measures, even with knowledge of the benefits some austerity measures and bailouts will have for Greece. As of this publication, Greece has partially defaulted. In March 2012, following a second EU/IMF bailout and austerity measures, private sector holders of Greek debt agreed to a debt-swap, with write off losses of $141.4 billion as a part of the debt exchange. While the effects have not been widely felt, further default will severely impact the future of the Eurozone.
Call for Papers!
The European Union Center at the University of Illinois is soliciting papers for possible publication as an EUC working paper. Papers on all aspects of the European Union will be considered. To submit a paper please email a PDF or Word document to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail two hardcopies to the UIUC EU Center (address).
- Volume 1, No. 1:
Exchange Rate Stability and Political Accountability in the European Monetary System
Author: William T. Bernhard
Abstract: The European Monetary System (EMS) created a policy standard-exchange rate stability-which domestic constituents could use to evaluate their government's policy choices. Domestic social coalitions in favor of macroeconomic discipline could punish governments that violated this standard. I test the argument that devaluations within the EMS negatively affect the devaluing government's approval ratings by using the London School/Hendry approach to model the approval ratings of the French prime minister and president from 1981-1992. The results indicate that devaluations did hurt the government's approval ratings. I contend that the domestic political cost for violating the focal point of exchange rate stability provided member governments with an additional incentive to pursue disciplined economic policies throughout the 1980s. The incentive to avoid currency devaluations also helped to shape the response to the twin shocks of German monetary unification and the Maastricht Treaty. Since realignment would have damaged their domestic popularity, member governments were unwilling to adjust their parities, leading to the collapse of the EMS.
- Volume 2, No. 1:
Response to Climate Change in a Transnational Context: The European Case
Author: Nazmiye Balta
Abstract:This paper explores how climate change issues can be dealt with in a transnational context, with a case study of the EU. It attempts to provide an outline of the European climate change policy, of the actors in play, its formulation and implementation processes, and a research agenda for a deeper understanding of these issues. The interviews made with the staff of the European Commission Directorate General of the Environment and of the ministry of environments in selected member states in the summer of 2002 highlight major experiences that could be gained from this European experience.
- Volume 2, No. 2:
Structural and Spatial Aspects of Regional Inequality in Spain: Growth Rates, Spatial Gradients, and Regional Policies
Authors: Kieran P. Donaghy and Sandy Dall'Erba
Abstract: In this paper we examine differences in Spain's regional economies and how these differences might be taken into account in designing policies to reduce regional inequality. Toward this end, we first set out a basic model of regional economic growth and develop time series corresponding to the theoretical variables of this model. We estimate from these series the model's parameters in the case of each of the regions of Spain to analyze structural differences in the nature of the economic growth processes at work. Making use of an approximation employed in projection methods, we also compute spatial gradients of growth rates for the regions of Spain to examine how these rates are changing through time as one moves across space relative to a reference location.
- Volume 2, No. 3:
The Trade-off Efficiency-Equity as an Explanation of the Mitigated Success of the European Regional Development Policies
Author: Sandy Dall'Erba
Abstract: The objective of this paper is to demonstrate that the European regional development funds do not allow simultaneous achievement of goals of efficiency and equity when they are dedicated to financing transportation infrastructures. The paper first gives some insights on the origin of regional policies. Then we focus on the degree to which Ireland, Spain and Portugal (but not Greece), the main beneficiaries of regional funds, have been able to move to the European average (in terms of per capita income) since their membership in the EU, which also corresponds to the time when regional assistance was initiated in these countries. Empirical evidence also reveals that income disparities are increasing among regions within each of these countries and this raises the question as to whether the impact of regional funds is or is not rather favorable to this particular convergence pattern, given that one of the primary objectives of regional funding has been to ensure greater cohesion over the whole European territory. The answer comes mainly from the type of infrastructure regional funds finance. Since a significant part of regional funds is devoted to transportation issues, their impact on regional development has to be seen in the light of characteristics of the transport sector and the specific requirements in transport of each individual sector. The paper concludes that transportation infrastructures promote the country's aggregate growth but cannot be seen as an efficient instrument to reduce interregional disparities in Europe.
- Volume 2, No. 4:
European Regional Development Policies: History and Current Issues
Author: Sandy Dall'Erba
Abstract: The objective of this paper is to demonstrate that the European regional development funds do not allow simultaneous achievement of goals of efficiency and equity when they are dedicated to financing transportation infrastructures. The paper first gives some insights on the history and the nature of regional development funds. Then we focus on the degree to which Ireland, Spain and Portugal (but not Greece), the main beneficiaries of regional policies, have been able to move to the European average (in terms of per capita income) since their membership in the EU, which also corresponds to the time when regional assistance was initiated in these countries. Empirical evidence also reveals that income disparities are increasing among regions within each of these countries and this raises the question as to whether the impact of regional funds is or is not rather favorable to this particular convergence pattern, given that one of the primary objectives of regional funding has been to ensure greater cohesion over the whole European territory. The answer comes mainly from the type of infrastructure regional funds finance. Since a significant part of regional funds is devoted to transportation issues, their impact on regional development has to be seen in the light of characteristics of the transport sector and the specific requirements in transport of each individual sector. The paper concludes that transportation infrastructures promote the country's aggregate growth but cannot be seen as an efficient instrument to reduce interregional disparities in Europe.
- Volume 3, No. 1:
Formal and Informal Ratification in the Intergovernmental Policies of the European Union
Author: Robert Pahre
Abstract: Putnam's theory of "two-level games" has spawned numerous studies examining the interaction between international and domestic politics, many focusing on politics in the European Union. While noting that ratification may be formal or informal, much of this literature treats each important domestic actor as if it has de facto formal ratification power. This means that the literature overlooks the very real distinction between formal and informal ratification. Informal ratification may be thought of as a case in which the government pays "audience costs" for unpopular international agreements. In this case, a government must respond continuously to public opinion. This presents constraints very different from those faced by governments who must obtain the formal approval of the legislature (or other actor). For example, divided government has no effect on the likelihood of informal ratification but often does affect the distribution of gains, while it often affects the likelihood of formal ratification but often has no effect on the distribution of the gains. Because these kinds of ratification differ significantly, Putnam's ratification metaphor is not always the most appropriate conceptualization of two-level politics in the European Union. The formal ratification metaphor is especially inappropriate for studying policy-making in the second and third pillars of the EU, which are mostly characterized by intergovernmental bargaining without formal ratification requirements.
- Volume 3, No. 2:
The Transformation of Employment Relations Systems in Central and Easter Europe
Authors: Ruth Aguilera and Adina Dabu
Abstract: During the 1990s employment relations systems in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) experienced a complex, multilevel process of transformation. In this article, we discuss the transformation of employment relations systems under the impact of privatization, foreign direct investment, and pressures for the accession to the European Union enlargement at the enterprise, industry-, and national levels. We argue that the pattern of embeddedness of ER in the former planned economic system, the developmental role of the state during the period of transition and the timing of the changes at a moment of intensified international competition resulted into unique configurations of employment relations in the different CEE countries, not necessarily converging toward the incremental adjustments of Western European employment relations. Key factors bound to further introduce transformations convergent with Western ER models include the growing presence of multinational companies and the perspective of the EU enlargement.
- Volume 4, No. 1:
The Implications of Accession For Waste Policies and Industrial Practices: Hungary and the European Union
Author: Zsuzsa Gille
Abstract: The hope that prevailed immediately after the collapse of state socialism was that Eastern Europe's environmental pollution would be "swept away by democracy and economic rationality." While with time such expectations have become more modest, some of the same hopes are now resurfacing as the accession of most former socialist countries to the European Union becomes imminent. Most environmentalists and policy experts anticipate an improvement in regulatory standards, in law enforcement, and in the availability of funding for environmental purposes. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate whether and how such expectations are being met in one area of environmental policies in Hungary, a country among the first wave of candidates to be admitted to the EU.
- Volume 4, No. 2:
Global Force, Connections, or Vision?: The Three Meanings of Europe in Postsocialism
Author: Zsuzsa Gille
Abstract: How can one provide a nuanced, empirically grounded, analysis of the diverse experiences and views of globalization is the question I set out to answer in this paper. This paper, therefore, explores the meanings of the European Union for various actors and social groups in Hungary. I argue that from the perspective of Eastern European candidate countries, the EU is a key agent of globalization, and, as such is an appropriate proxy for studying globalization in postsocialism.
- Volume 4, No. 3:
In the Laboratory of Europe: Governing the "Europe of the Regions" on the Polish/German Frontier
Author: Andrew D. Asher
- Volume 5, No. 1:
Bridging the Divide? Europeanization, Transnational Consumption, and Ethnic Identity in a "European City"
Author: Andrew D. Asher
Abstract: In an effort to promote the free movement of people and capital, and to establish a supranational conception of identity that deemphasizes nationality and ethnicity as markers of difference, the European Union (EU) has pursued a specific policy agenda of "deterritorializing" its internal borders. Utilizing the urban area of Frankfurt an-der-Oder, Germany, and Slubice, Poland--two border cities divided only by the Oder River--as an ethnographic site, this paper examines the construction and performance of national and ethnic identities in the transnational context of the Polish-German border regions through the commonplace cultural interactions engendered by the deregulation of cross-border movements and consumption practices. By examining the everyday articulation and negotiation between different ethnicities and nationalities, this paper explores how residents of the Polish/German border regions employ different forms of ethnic, national and transnational identities, and how systems of ethnicity and nationality are reconfigured in response to the EU's expanding transnational institutions. In this way, Frankfurt(Oder)/Slubice acts as a microcosm for demonstrating transformations that are occurring throughout Europe, by virtue of its location as a place where what it means to be "European" is negotiated and contested through everyday cross-border practices and interactions.
- Volume 6, No. 1:
Adjudication of International Disputes in Europe: The Role of the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights
Author: Luis Barrionuevo Arévalo
Abstract: Over the last 50 years the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights have built an unprecedented record in the field of international dispute settlement, not only by delivering hundreds of judgments on a diversity of issues every year but also by compelling the compliance of European states with their rulings. The compulsory nature of their jurisdiction, their ability to engage not only states but individuals and national courts in the adjudication process, and the high degree of economic, political and cultural homogeneity of the litigants are some of the factors accounting for such remarkable performance. This Article examines the origin, structure and main features of both courts, as well as their similarities and differences in terms of law applied, jurisdiction and litigation pattern. Mention is also made to the potential for overlapping jurisdiction stemming from recent developments such as the incorporation into European Community law of the human rights standards embodied in the European Convention of Human Rights.
- Volume 6, No. 2:
The Myths of Turkish Influence in the European Union
Authors: Robert Pahre and Burcu Uçaray
Abstract: Among the many objections to Turkish membership in the European Union lie claims that Turkey will be a powerful actor in the future EU, with a population as large as or larger than Germany. Many also claim that this power will have negative effects on the EU. We examine such claims analytically, influenced strongly by spatial models of EU policy-making. We find that Turkey's preferences lie sufficiently outside the EU mainstream so that it will have little influence in day-to-day policy-making under the assent, codecision, consultation, and cooperation procedures (or the common procedure in the rejected constitutional treaty). Its influence may be more evident in areas such as the CFSP or JHA, where unanimity remains the normal procedure. Still, Turkey's veto power here is no different from that of other, much smaller countries. Furthermore, veto power can only block changes and cannot be used to pull the EU into undesirable new directions. Even this veto power can be avoided if the EU-25 establishes whatever policies they desire prior to Turkish membership, forcing Turkey to accept a fait accompli. Despite these limitations to its power, Turkey may have some influence in purely intergovernmental settings such as negotiations over new treaties that might occur some decades hence.
- Volume 7, No. 1:
Political Ambition and Legislative Behavior in the European Parliament
Authors: Stephen A. Meserve, Daniel Pemstein, and William T. Bernhard
Abstract: Members of the European Parliament (MEP) typically follow one of two career paths, either advancing within the European Parliament itself or returning to higher office in their home states. We argue that these different ambitions condition legislative behavior. Specifically, MEPs seeking domestic careers defect from group-leadership votes more frequently and oppose legislation that expands the purview of supranational institutions. We show how individual, domestic-party, and national level variables shape the careers available to MEPs and, in turn, their voting choices. To test the argument, we analyze MEPs' roll-call voting behavior in the 5th session of the EP (1999-2004) using a random effects model that captures idiosyncrasies in voting behavior across both individual MEPs and specific roll-call votes.
- Volume 8, No. 1:
The Vienna Diplomatic Program: Goals and Outcomes in a Non-Traditional Study Abroad Program
Author: Robert Pahre
Abstract: The University of Illinois’ Vienna Diplomatic Program provides a nontraditional, semester-long study abroad opportunity for students interested in international organizations. It is grounded in a philosophy of experiential learning that combines study abroad and learning-by- doing in a capstone research project. The VDP is one of several programs using the administrative auspices of the University’s Austria-Illinois Exchange Program for its infrastructure. Students in the VDP may take English-language courses on international relations at our Vienna partner universities, or take German-language courses if their skills are sufficiently advanced. While in Vienna, each student writes a major research paper on one of the international organizations in Vienna. The Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law, and the European Union have been the most popular subjects for research. Students report very high levels of satisfaction with the program. Students tend to come from political science, economics, and history, and appreciate having a study abroad program with a social-science and public policy focus. Student satisfaction is evident in the important role of word-of-mouth in publicizing the program. Graduates have gone on to both research-oriented and policy-oriented positions. Another group seems to have benefited from immersion into the transnational community of the expatriate, leading them to careers based on cross-cultural exchange and globalized society. Because the program is less than ten years old, we do not yet know its effect on the long-term career paths of its alumni.
Student Grant Reports
Information Sharing Devices in Environmental Policy: The EU Eco-Label and EMAS
EU Investment in Cuba and Helms-Burton
Candace A. Martinez