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Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

5. The Triumph of Community Europe  

Craig Parsons

This chapter examines the competition of ideas in France for intra-European cooperation in the 1950s, ranging from traditional intergovernmental arrangements to the sharing of national sovereignty. In particular, it considers how strong political leadership and the formation of crosscutting coalitions that commanded a majority of parliamentary support at critical junctures contributed to the triumph of Community Europe, in the form of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC). The chapter argues that the future of European integration, which followed the Community model, hinged on electoral outcomes and parliamentary manoeuvrings in France that had less to do with the forcefulness of the ideas at issue than with unrelated political developments. It also looks at the demise of the European Defence Community (EDC) that paved the way for the ECSC and EEC projects.

Chapter

Cover The European Union

2. How Did We Get Here?  

Desmond Dinan

This chapter focuses on the historical development of the EU. The history of the EU began when European governments responded to a series of domestic, regional, and global challenges after World War II by establishing new transnational institutions in order to accelerate political and economic integration. These challenges ranged from postwar reconstruction to the Cold War, and then to globalization. Driven largely by mutually compatible national interests, Franco-German bargains, and American influence, politicians responded by establishing the EC in the 1950s and the EU in the 1990s. The chapter examines the Schuman Plan, the European Defence Community, the European Community, the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), enlargement, Constitution-building, and the Eurozone crisis.

Chapter

Cover Politics in the European Union

6. The ‘Other’ European Communities and the Origins of the European Economic Community (the Early 1950s to the 1960s)  

This chapter focuses on the ‘other’ European communities and the origins of the European Economic Community (EEC). Negotiations over a plan for a European Defence Community (EDC) ran parallel to those over the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). Connected with the EDC was a proposal to create a European Political Community (EPC) to provide democratic European structures for co-ordinating foreign policies. This chapter first considers the Pleven Plan for an EDC, before discussing the development of the EDC/EPC plan and the ultimate failure to reach agreement in 1954. It also analyses the Messina negotiations and the road to the Treaties of Rome. Finally, it looks at the experience of the other organization that was created at the same time as the EEC, the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom), which, like the ECSC, was institutionally merged with the EEC in 1967.

Chapter

Cover European Union Politics

1. Introduction  

Michelle Cini and Nieves Pérez-Solórzano Borragán

This chapter comprises a very brief introduction to European Union (EU) politics. It aims to help those students who are completely new to the EU by drawing attention to some general background information and context, which should help to make sense of the chapters that follow. To that end this introductory chapter begins by explaining what the EU is, why it was originally set up, and what the EU does. The chapter ends by explaining how the book is organized.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

9. From Deadlock to Dynamism  

The European Community in the 1980s

N. Piers Ludlow

This chapter examines the origins of the European Community's (EC) transformation, arguing that the most important factor was the emergence of a new degree of consensus among economic and political leaders about what ‘Europe’ should do. In the course of the mid-1980s, the EC went from being a seemingly moribund entity to a rapidly developing success story. The launch of the single market programme revitalized the EC, helped it overcome long-standing institutional paralyses, created onward pressure for yet more integration, and forced the rest of the world to pay heed to the European integration process once more. The chapter explains how the apparently narrow target of establishing an internal market within the EC encouraged multiple other efforts to integrate Western Europe more closely. It also considers the important role played by national governments and the European Council in shaping the direction of European integration.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

15. The Historiography of European Integration  

Desmond Dinan

This chapter reviews the historiography of European integration, focusing on how scholars have interpreted the process and explained key events and developments. It first considers the federalist narrative and its critique of intergovernmentalism, along with its claim that the Hague Congress of 1948 and the European Defence Community of the early 1950s were great opportunities lost; the nation state was in long-term decline; and the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC) presaged the eventual emergence of a United States of Europe. At the same time, some scholars and analysts of the European Community (EC) presented a more realistic picture of the process of European integration that foreshadowed the revisionism of Alan Milward in the 1980s. The chapter also examines the views of scholars such as Altiero Spinelli, Jean Monnet, Robert Schuman, and John Gillingham.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

13. A Special Case  

The United Kingdom and the European Union

Desmond Dinan

This chapter examines the United Kingdom's troubled relationship with the movement for European integration and with the European Union more generally. Citing speeches made by leading British politicians over the last seventy years, including Winston Churchill, Harold Macmillan, Margaret Thatcher, and David Cameron, the chapter outlines four distinct stages of British association with the EU: a period of detachment in the early years; involvement in a lengthy accession process and renegotiation of membership terms; engagement in effort to reform the budget and launch the single market programme; and growing disillusionment as the EU strengthened along supranational lines and extended its policy remit, notably by embracing the economic and monetary union (EMU). These periods cover a range of important developments, such as the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), the European Economic Community (EEC), the EMU, and the Single European Act.

Chapter

Cover European Integration Theory

3. Neofunctionalism  

Arne Niemann, Zoe Lefkofridi, and Philippe C. Schmitter

This chapter focuses on neofunctionalism, one of the earlier theories of regional integration. Neofunctionalist theory was first formulated in the late 1950s and early 1960s, but began to receive increasing criticism from the mid1960s, particularly because of several adverse empirical developments, the culmination of which was the Empty Chair crisis of 1965–66 when French President Charles de Gaulle effectively paralysed the European Community. With the resurgence of the European integration process in the mid1980s, neofunctionalism made a substantial comeback. After providing an overview of neofunctionalism’s intellectual roots, the chapter examines early neofunctionalism’s core assumptions and hypotheses, including its central notion of ‘spillover’. It then considers the criticisms that have been levelled against it before turning to later revisions of the theory. Finally, this chapter applies the theory critically to explain the nature and probable outcome of the sovereign debt crisis.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

3. The German Problem and European Integration  

John R. Gillingham

This chapter examines how European integration contributed to the so-called German Problem — the problem of managing Germany's political rehabilitation and economic resurgence after World War II. The achievement rested not only on the Schuman Plan and the ensuing European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), but also on cooperation among French and German coal and steel producers in the interwar period. The adoption by the new Federal Republic of homegrown economically liberal policies, which complemented and implemented the wartime vision of American postwar policy, was another decisive factor. The chapter first provides an overview of the postwar framework for Germany's economic recovery and political rehabilitation, focusing on the Marshall Plan, the German economic boom, and Jean Monnet's role in shaping postwar Europe. It also considers the evolution of French Ruhrpolitik, the Schuman Plan negotiations, and the eclipse of Monnetism and the founding of the European Economic Community.

Chapter

Cover European Union Politics

2. The European Union: Establishment and Development  

David Phinnemore

The focus of this chapter is the emergence of the European Communities in the 1950s, their evolution in the three decades thereafter, and the establishment and early development of the European Union (EU) in the 1990s. The chapter explores key developments in the first five decades of European integration and some of the tensions that have shaped them. It considers the ambitions of the architects and supporters of the European Communities and how their hopes and aspirations played out as integration became a reality in the 1950s and 1960s. It looks at how their ambitions grew and how the process then lost momentum in the 1970s before the idea of ‘European union’ was rekindled in the 1980s with the Single European Act (1986) and the Single Market project. These acted as catalysts for a new era of dynamic European integration with the now expanded Communities at its core. The chapter then explores how, through the adoption and implementation of the Treaty on European Union (1992), the European Union was established. The chapter assesses the unique and incomplete form of the new ‘union’ and examines the impact on it of reforms introduced by the Treaty of Amsterdam (1997) and the Treaty of Nice (2000) as the EU sought to prepare itself for the further enlargement and the challenges of the initial years of the twenty-first century.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

11. The European Union, the Soviet Union, and the End of the Cold War  

Jeffrey J. Anderson

This chapter examines the connection between German unification and the economic and monetary union (EMU), with particular emphasis on the relationship between the acceleration of European integration in the late 1980s and the seismic geopolitical shifts in Central and Eastern Europe, culminating in the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Following a review of relations between the European Community (EC) and the Soviet Union on the eve of those momentous events, the chapter explains how the rapid integration in Western Europe became intertwined with disintegration in Central and Eastern Europe. It shows that the collapse of the Soviet bloc had a profound impact on the European Union as ten newly-independent Central and Eastern European states clamoured for membership. The chapter concludes with an assessment of EU enlargement in the post-Cold War period.

Chapter

Cover US Foreign Policy

13. The USA and the EU  

Mike Smith

This chapter examines the United States’ involvement in the transatlantic relationship with the European integration project. In particular, it considers the ways in which U.S. foreign policy makers have developed images of the European Community and now the European Union on the challenges posed by European integration for U.S. policy processes and the uses of U.S. power. It also explores how these challenges have been met in the very different conditions of the Cold War and post-Cold War periods. It concludes by raising a number of questions about the capacity of the United States to shape and adapt to European integration, and thus about the future of U.S.–EU relations.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

7. Under the Shadow of Stagflation  

European Integration in the 1970s

Richard T. Griffiths

This chapter examines European integration during the 1970s. The 1970s is often portrayed as a dismal decade in the history of European integration, when the European Community (EC) experienced severe turbulence as it digested Britain's accession and was buffeted by the global economic downturn. Stagflation and Eurosclerosis — sluggish economic growth combined with institutional immobility — ensued. At the same time, however, the Community developed in important ways. The European Court of Justice generated an impressive body of case law, and the EC coped with the challenges of enlargement, the break-up of the international monetary system, and the consequences of slower economic growth. The chapter rejects the notion that the 1970s was a dismal decade in the history of European integration and describes it as a transitional period between the launch of the Community in the 1960s and the acceleration of European integration in the 1980s.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

Introduction  

Desmond Dinan

This edition examines the origins and evolution of the European Union and the development of European integration from the immediate post-World War II period, when politicians and the public seemed willing to share national sovereignty for the sake of greater security, to the shock of the eurozone crisis nearly seventy years later, when the EU lacked public and political support. Far from existing in isolation, the volume shows that the European Community and, later, the EU was inextricably linked with broader regional and international developments throughout that time. It features contributions from leading scholars of the EU, who discuss a wide range of issues including the common agricultural policy (CAP), the single market programme, the economic and monetary union (EMU), and EU enlargement.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

6. Charles de Gaulle’s Uncertain Idea of Europe  

Jeffrey Vanke

This chapter examines how policy towards the European Economic Community (EEC) fitted in with French leader Charles de Gaulle's broader European and international objectives and how the international constraints on his certain vision of France gave rise to his evolving, uncertain idea of Europe. Having denounced the Treaty of Rome before coming to power in 1958, de Gaulle ensured the EEC's survival by undertaking financial reforms in France and warding off Britain's effort to negotiate a wider free trade area. He linked these initiatives to implementation of the common agricultural policy (CAP). The chapter also considers de Gaulle's proposal for an independent and intergovernmental European Union and his role in the so-called Empty Chair Crisis of 1965–6. Finally, it discusses the impact of de Gaulle on the course of European integration.

Chapter

Cover The Institutions of the European Union

2. The history of EU institutions:  

seven decades of institutional change

Renaud Dehousse and Paul Magnette

EU institutions have frequently been reformed since the origins of what is now the European Union (EU), and particularly so over the past twenty years. This chapter explains why and how this quasi-constant change has taken place. It begins by identifying five phases in this history: the founding, consolidation, relaunch, adaptation, and the current phase of reaction to functional challenges. The chapter then assesses the respective weight of state interests, ideas, and institutions in the evolution of EU institutions. In retrospect, institutional change in the EU appears to have followed a functionalist logic, leading to complex compromises that, in turn, prompt regular calls for ‘simplification’ and democratization.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

4. Liberalization, Convertibility, and the Common Market  

Wendy Asbeek Brusse

This chapter examines how the European Payments Union resolved the problem of currency convertibility and unlocked the potential of trade liberalization, thereby paving the way for the European Economic Community (EEC), which in turn spurred further intra-European trade. It first provides an overview of trade and payments before and immediately after World War II and goes on to discuss postwar approaches to convertibility and liberalization. It then considers the degree, speed, and commitment with which countries opened up their domestic markets to each other's exports under the Trade Liberalization Programme. It concludes with an assessment of Britain's efforts to join a wider free trade area with the members of the Organization for European Economic Cooperation.

Chapter

Cover Politics in the European Union

26. Enlargement  

This chapter first examines the European Union’s (EU’s) main enlargement rounds. The first enlargement occurred in 1973 when Britain, Denmark, and Ireland were admitted as members. The second (1981) and third (1986) enlargements are often treated as a single ‘southern enlargement’. The fourth enlargement took place in 1995, and admitted Austria, Finland, and Sweden. The fifth and sixth enlargements, in 2004 and 2007, are known as the ‘eastern enlargement’. The seventh enlargement saw the admittance of Croatia in 2013. A number of further states in the western Balkans are at various stages in their accession processes. The chapter describes what happened during each round and the evolution of the procedure for joining. It reviews academic explanations of why the various applications for membership were made, and why they were accepted by the European Community (EC)/EU. Finally, the chapter looks at the controversial case of Turkey and considers the notion of ‘enlargement fatigue’.

Chapter

Cover Origins and Evolution of the European Union

10. From the Single Market to the Single Currency  

Dorothee Heisenberg

This chapter examines how France's dissatisfaction with de facto German dominance of the European Monetary System (EMS) set the European Community (EC) on the road to the economic and monetary union (EMU) in the late 1980s. It first considers the conduct and outcome of the Maastricht negotiations on EMU before discussing the rocky road to the launch of the single currency in 1999 and the experience of EMU since then. In particular, it analyses the difficulty of enforcing the Stability and Growth Pact for fiscal discipline among participating member states. It also looks at the Delors Committee and the role of Bundesbank president Karl-Otto Pöhl. Finally, the chapter explores attempts to coordinate fiscal policy management as well as the onset and impact of the eurozone crisis.

Chapter

Cover Politics in the European Union

5. From the End of the War to the Schuman Plan (the Late 1940s to the Early 1950s)  

This chapter charts the long history of plans for European unity, from the end of the Second World War to the Hague Congress, the Cold War, the Schuman Plan, and the Treaty of Paris. It also considers European federalism and the practical reasons why some moves to European unity found favour with the new governments of the post-war period: the threat of communism and the emergence of the Cold War; the so-called German Problem; and the need to ensure adequate supplies of coal for the post-war economic reconstruction. As a solution to these intersecting problems, Jean Monnet, came up with a proposal that paved the way for the establishment of the European Coal and Steel Community. The chapter examines Monnet’s proposal, national reactions to it, and the negotiations that led to the creation of the first of the European communities.