European Union Publications

355. Do Markets Punish EU Backsliders? The Role of Enforcement

Jul 07, 2011
November 2008 - Scholars of international institutions have long praised the ability of international organizations such as the European Union (EU) to promote cooperative behavior, stability and the rule of law. Implicit in that praise is the idea that the EU closely monitors member states' behavior and punishes those that break the rules. In practice, however, the EU rarely enforces its own rules, restricting itself for the most part to strongly worded statements, taking states to court for non-compliance with directives, and only occasional formal punishment. Indeed, the EU's freezing of structural funds to Bulgaria this past summer, due to the country's lack of progress on anticorruption measures, was one of the rare examples of Brussels making good on its threats to rein in its members' behavior: so much for the rule of law, in practice. more

280. The European Union, the Balkans and Turkey: Can "Soft Power" Bring Stability and Democracy

Jul 07, 2011
October 2003 - The European Union (EU) is widely recognized as the international actor with the most potential influence in promoting ethnic reconciliation, shoring up democracy and supporting the economic revitalization of the Balkans. The EU's influence is immediate—providing humanitarian aid, economic assistance, market access and political support. It is also long-term—shaping the tenor of domestic politics by offering the prospect of EU membership. The prospect of EU membership may be more diffuse, but it is ultimately more powerful. It provides substantial and consistent incentives for political moderation and reform on the part of elites in the Balkans and also in Turkey. The World Bank's 2001 report noted that its strategy for the region is "built upon the assumption that a credible commitment to integration with European and global structures, especially the European Union, is a critical ingredient of success, as it will serve as an external driver of reform and intra-regional integration." more

344. Macedonia and its Hurdles on the Road to the European Union

Jul 07, 2011
January 2008 - The integration of Macedonia into the European Union and NATO becomes a more complex issue every day. The reasons behind this complexity can be found both within Macedonia and outside its borders. However, at this moment the chief issue seems to be the fact that EU member states—vigilantly protecting their own interests first—tend to disagree on many issues related to Macedonia's readiness to accede to the EU. This has significantly slowed down the process of reaching an agreement on Macedonia's swift integration into the European Union. more

276. EU Enlargement: Implications for US Trade and International Financial Policies

Jul 07, 2011
EU Enlargement, now scheduled to take place in May 2004, will involve the addition of ten states: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia. I will highlight the potential benefits of enlargement as well as the possible areas of contention between the EU and US stemming from the enlargement process. more

342. Greece, the Western Balkans and the European Union

Jul 07, 2011
November 2007 - The Wilson Center's East European Studies program, in cooperation with the American College of Thessaloniki, the University division of Anatolia College, held a workshop November 30-December 1, 2007, which aimed at trouble-shooting the complex process of European integration of the Western Balkans. This meeting was sponsored by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. Discussions built upon the dual premise that EU accession holds the best hope for overcoming stagnation in the Western Balkans and that the traditional enlargement process is not working in the region. The US, the EU and neighboring countries, such as Greece, certainly have much to contribute in reinvigorating this process, and coordinating their policies seems to be of paramount importance. more

265. The European Union's Eastern Enlargement: State-Building or Empire-Building?

Jul 07, 2011
November 2002- Scholarly debates on the nature of the European Union typically revolve around the question of the degree to which state sovereignty is being impaired (or transcended) by the process of integration. Realists and intergovernmentalists, such as Alan Milward and Andrew Moravcsik, argue that integration serves the interests of the member states and, hence, consolidates the nation-state by enabling positive domestic results that could not be achieved without multilateral cooperation. Others, more supranationally-inclined, like Joseph Weiler, maintain that what may begin as an issue of specific "pooling" of sovereignty can take on a life of its own, as new structures of governance are created that ultimately supercede and curtail national authorities. Not surprisingly, these divergent views of integration posit continuous tensions and conflicts between national governments and supranational institutions over the contested question of where ultimate sovereignty and decision-making authority should reside. In the context of the EU's eastern enlargement, however, such tensions appear to have fallen largely by the wayside. Both the Brussels bureaucracy and the national governments are in agreement that preserving the gains of integration to date – regardless of whether these accrue mainly to the benefit of the nation state or the supranational entity – entails a concentrated effort of EU-assisted ‘institution-building' in the East European candidate countries. more

334. Ending the State-Building Impasse: What Can Be Learned from Previous EU Enlargements that Might Offer Solutions for Bosnia and Herzegovina?

Jul 07, 2011
February 2007 - Over the last two years, the international community's policy has been to accelerate the process of state-building in Bosnia and Herzegovina, so that a strong, unified state can "plug into" European institutions. Certainly, the United States hopes that the European Union (EU) can replicate the strong and positive impact it has had on its 10 member states from postcommunist Europe. At the same time, the EU is eager to test the capacity of its Common Foreign and Security Policy in the Western Balkans and therefore has taken up the challenge to play a larger role in Bosnia and, hopefully, lead it through the accession process. more

256. Croatia and Euro-Atlantic Integration

Jul 07, 2011
June 2002- I am very pleased to have this opportunity to present to you the short overview of the situation on-the-ground in Croatia, the government's achievements in the last two years, as well as our short- and long-term priorities and objectives. more

332. Security and Insecurity in the EU Neighborhood and Beyond: In Search of Solutions

Jul 07, 2011
February 2007 - The world as we know it today is rapidly changing. On the one hand, we witness a rise of new military and economic powers; we trace the nearly-invisible threats posed by the international terror networks and see new dividing lines between democracies and authoritarian regimes. On the other hand, two things remain the same: grave threats for global security and a necessity to think and act globally in response. Without our common actions, peace and stability will be in deficit around the world, divided by the haves and have-nots of the universal right to security and development. more

249. The East European Economies Before Accession to the EU

Jul 07, 2011
February 2002- With the exceptions of Macedonia and Poland, 2001 was not a bad year for Central and Eastern Europe, especially in light of all the economic turmoil throughout the rest of the world. Ironically, after a tumultuous decade in the 1990s, in 2001 the transition economies have been relatively immune to economic recession. In Central Europe in 2001, economic growth accelerated in the Czech Republic and Slovakia to 3 percent or more. PlanEcon projects Hungary will post a final figure of 4 percent and Slovenia will register 3.4 percent growth for 2001, commendable performances in both cases, although lower rates than in 2000. In addition, these two countries enjoyed better balance in their economies. Inflation has fallen. Hungary's current account deficit has narrowed sharply; Slovenia's deficit has turned to surplus. more

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