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International Relations and the European Union

International Relations and the European Union (4th edn)

Christopher Hill, Michael Smith, and Sophie Vanhoonacker-Kormoss
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date: 21 February 2024

p. 31. Introduction: Approaches and Conceptslocked

p. 31. Introduction: Approaches and Conceptslocked

  • Christopher Hill,
  • Michael Smith
  •  and Sophie Vanhoonacker

Abstract

This chapter looks at how we consider the European Union (EU) today. The EU is now regarded as an international actor. In this way, the development of the EU, this chapter shows, as a system of international relations in itself can be related analytically to the place it occupies in the process of international relations, and to its position as a ‘power’ in the global arena. This sort of analysis, the chapter argues, facilitates an understanding of the ways in which the EU produces international action and the ways in which the international dimension enters into EU policymaking. This relates particularly to the many crises that have affected the EU in the last few years, such as the eurozone crisis, the war in Ukraine, Brexit, and the Covid-19 pandemic.

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