The European Union: How Does It Work? is a perfect introduction to the European Union, providing concise, accessible coverage of the main actors, policies, and developments in the EU. An expert team of leading scholars and practitioners cuts through the complexity to explain how the EU works in theory and practice. The book equips readers with the knowledge and skills required to master the subject. Helpful learning features throughout the text help to develop readers’ understanding of the EU. ‘How it really works’ boxes demonstrate the working of the EU in practice, and challenge readers to contrast this with theoretical perspectives. ‘Key terms and concepts’ boxes provide concise definitions or summaries of words and ideas that are essential to understanding the EU. And each chapter contains ‘Spotlight’ boxes exploring specific cases that highlight how the EU works, what it does, or how it has evolved. Taken together, these features encourage readers to think critically about the reality of politics in the EU. This edition explores ongoing challenges to the EU, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, and the erosion of democratic standards in some EU member states.
Edited by Daniel Kenealy, Amelia Hadfield, Richard Corbett, and John Peterson
26. Health and Security
Stefan Elbe and Eva Hilberg
What threat can diseases pose to security? The sheer breadth of possible answers to this question has become increasingly evident during the recent COVID-19 pandemic, which was caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This chapter explores three such links between health and security. First, some diseases are identified as threats to human security. The human security framework draws particular attention to diseases—such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis—that remain endemic in many low-income countries, that continue to cause millions of deaths annually, and that also pose substantial challenges to the survival and well-being of individuals and communities. Second, some emerging infectious diseases—such as SARS, pandemic flu, Ebola, and COVID-19—are identified as threats to national security because their rapid spread can cause high death tolls and trigger significant economic disruption. Finally, some diseases are also identified as narrower threats to bio-security within the context of international efforts to combat terrorism. Here concerns have focused on the spectre of a terrorist attack using a disease-causing biological agent such as anthrax, smallpox, or plague. The chapter concludes by contrasting two different ways of understanding this health–security nexus: as an instance of securitization or medicalization.
28. COVID-19 and EU Health Policy
Eleanor Brooks, Sarah Rozenblum, Scott L. Greer, and Anniek de Ruijter
This chapter explores the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for the EU’s health policy. Health is an area where member states have historically been reluctant to cede powers. Consequently, the EU’s treaty competences in health are limited. The chapter introduces the extent and parameters of the EU’s role and the resulting patchwork of health policy and law which exists at European level. When COVID-19 emerged, the EU could not offer a comprehensive response, although the scale of the emergency put pressure on norms of solidarity and free movement. The chapter reviews the EU’s response within six different areas of (health and non-health) policy, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of the EU’s efforts to fight and mitigate the pandemic using the public health, internal market, and fiscal governance dimensions of its health powers before discussing the implications of the pandemic and the EU’s response.
10. Current and Future Challenges
Amelia Amelia, Daniel Kenealy, and Richard Corbett
As it moves into the third decade of the 21st century, the EU faces a number of new and unprecedented challenges–as well as some perennial ones. The chapter opens with a discussion of the challenges posed by the UK’s withdrawal from the EU (Brexit). It goes on to consider how the COVID-19 pandemic has catalysed a series of pre-existing internal and external policy challenges, as well as creating new ones. These in turn have raised questions about various aspects of the EU’s governance, from the size and scope of its budget to the quality of democracy across its member states; from the role of the Commission to decision-making rules in the Council. How well the EU responds to these many challenges will shape the future of the Union.
1. Introduction: Approaches and Concepts
Christopher Hill, Michael Smith, and Sophie Vanhoonacker
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.
12. The Shadows of Empire: African Perceptions of Europe and the EU
This chapter considers the shaping of relations between Africa and Europe. It looks at how they continue to be adversely affected, by the historical trauma of five centuries of slavery and colonialism. The shadows of empire continue to cast over these bonds, as exemplified in the European Union’s (EU’s) heavy-handed and mercantilist negotiating approach during the conclusion of Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with African states between 2002 and 2016. Tensions could also be seen on issues relating to the poor treatment of African migrants by European governments, and a lack of African access to Covid-19 drugs. Some African leaders—particularly in the francophone world—embraced aspects of European colonial rule, as useful to their post-colonial development, but most leaders and citizens in Africa continue to note the destructive legacy and continued dominance of inherited European institutions and the unfair global structures of trade. Despite European talk of ‘equal partnership’ and its provision of development aid, non-reciprocal trade access (since revoked), and security assistance; the African side still often feels that an unequal, paternalistic relationship has continued with Europe, similar to the exploitative patterns of the past.
9. The European Union and the Global Political Economy
This chapter examines the position of the European Union (EU) in the global political economy (GPE). It also highlights key dimensions of change and development, and evaluates the EU’s impact on the operation of the contemporary GPE. It does this by examining key ideas in international political economy (IPE), by relating these to the growth of the EU, and by assessing the EU’s role in the GPE in three areas: European integration itself, the EU’s engagement in the GPE, and the EU’s claims to be a major economic power. The final part of the chapter brings these together with an analysis of global economic governance—in particular, the EU’s role in the financial, multilateral state system with its principles of global governance, and pays some attention to recent crises (such as the Covid-19 pandemic) and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Edited by John Baylis, Steve Smith, and Patricia Owens
The Globalization of World Politics is an introduction to international relations (IR) and offers coverage of key theories and global issues. The ninth edition has been updated to explore the most pressing topics and challenges that dominate international relations today, including a chapter on global health, which explores the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Pedagogical features—such as case studies and questions, a debating feature, and end-of-chapter questions—aid with the evaluation of key IR debates and the application of theory and IR concepts to real world events.
This chapter examines the core assumptions of poststructuralism, one of the international relations (IR) perspectives furthest away from the realist and liberal mainstream. It explores whether language matters for international relations, whether all states have the same identity, and whether the state is the most important actor in world politics today. The chapter also considers poststructuralist views about the social world, state sovereignty, and identity and foreign policy. Finally, it discusses poststructuralism as a political philosophy. Two case studies follow. The first one looking at discourses, images, and the victory of the Taliban regime. The second case studies examines Covid-19, state sovereignty, and vaccines.
2. Globalization and global politics
This chapter examines the characteristics of contemporary globalization and how they are reshaping world politics. It argues that both the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change are indicative of just how deeply enmeshed the fate of communities and societies across the world has become, not to mention how globalization simultaneously unifies and divides the world. It explains why globalization challenges some of our traditional ways of thinking and theorizing about world politics. It asks whether there are limits to globalization or whether it is inevitable. It also considers the extent to which globalization is responsible for the emerging shift in the structure of world power, namely the ‘decline of the West’ and the ‘rise of the rest’. Two case studies are presented: one is about global food security and the other is about multicentric globalization.
25. Global health
This chapter looks at public health on a global scale and examines how crucial this topic has become since the recent Covid-19 pandemic. Global political interest in pandemics, the chapter argues, is about much more than just the threat to health and lives. It is also about the knock-on impact health emergencies, such as the recent pandemic, have on economics and society including social welfare and education, but also socio-economic, gender, and racial equality. The chapter starts with an examination of how health became a global issue with reference in particular to the relationship between war and disease. In addition to this, health became a global issues as a result of the growth in world trade and the resultant economic globalization. Two case studies are presented in this chapter. The first consider the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1308 and the second delves into the relationship between Covid-19 vaccinations and intellectual property rights.
26. Refugees and forced migration
This chapter is concerned with the international politics of refugees and forced migration. It shows how they are produced and managed in the context of contemporary globalization. Forced migration, the chapter defines, is the compulsory mobility of people due to existing and potential threats, mostly in the Global South and East. The chapter explains that these threats are related to a variety of international issues, and highlights the fact that there is debate concerning the underlying causes, including on-going colonial legacies and existing power relations. In order to discuss forced migration, with an emphasis on the international politics of refugee legislation and law, the chapter locates the subject within the field of international relations (IR). It goes on to provide an overview of the conceptual debate, presenting a critical discussion of new ways of characterizing forced migration, along with their analytical and policy implications. It then considers how policy-makers classify various types of forced migration. Case studies look at Covid-19 and the effect the pandemic has had on asylum processing and forced migration, criminal and state violence, and corporations in Venezuela.
27. Poverty, hunger, and development
This chapter examines the contested nature of three important concepts in world politics: poverty, hunger, and development. It explores whether the poor must always be with us, why so many children die of malnutrition, and whether development should be understood as an economic issue. It also considers orthodox and alternative approaches to development as solutions for poverty and hunger. The chapter includes two case studies. The first looking at the hunger of children around the world, comparing the pre- and post-pandemic situations. The second case study examines hunger in Uganda, again, comparing the state of hunger for families in that country before and after the Covid-19 pandemic.
K. M. Fierke
This chapter examines the key debates that have shaped the development of constructivism in International Relations (IR). It first considers the idea that international relations is a social construction, as it emerged from the critique of more traditional theories of IR. It then explores the distinctions among various constructivisms, with particular emphasis on the contrast between those who seek a ‘better’ social science, and hence better theory, versus those who argue that constructivism is an approach that rests on assumptions at odds with those of positivist method. The chapter proceeds by discussing constructivists’ critique of rationalism, along with constructivism as a ‘middle ground’ between rationalist and poststructuralist approaches to IR. It also analyses the role of language and causality in the debate between rationalists and constructivists. Finally, it links all these insights to the War on Terror and the war on Covid-19.
This chapter looks into the mystery as to why many people think that capitalism is the only viable economic system. Globalisation has significantly transformed the economic lives of people, and this is visible on an everyday level. Beyond the process of production, capitalism also goes hand in hand with social transformations such as the Covid-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter campaign. Since capitalism is a deeply political system with far-reaching effects on the international system, the chapter explores the myth that capitalism operates as a system of free enterprise independent of state involvement. Additionally, it considers the importance of reflecting on new ways of thinking about capitalism and how a world after capitalism might look.
20. The Stability of EU Policy-Making in a Turbulent World
Mark A. Pollack, Christilla Roederer-Rynning, and Alasdair R. Young
This chapter examines trends in European Union policy-making during times of multiple, overlapping challenges. It first considers the main trends in EU policy-making that emerge from policy case studies, including experimentation with new modes of policy-making, often in conjunction with more established modes, leading to hybridization; renegotiation of the role of the member states (and their domestic institutions) in the EU policy process; and erosion of traditional boundaries between internal and external policies. The chapter proceeds by discussing the issue of national governance as well as the interaction between European and global governance. Finally, it explores how the EU has responded to the challenges of Brexit, the politicization of the Union, geopolitical upheaval, and the shock of the Covid-19 pandemic.
1. Introduction: from international politics to world politics
John Baylis, Steve Smith, and Patricia Owens
This chapter introduces the text which offers a comprehensive analysis of world politics in a global era. The text examines the main theories of world politics— realism, liberalism, Marxism, social constructivism, poststructuralism, post-colonialism, and feminism. It reviews the main structures and processes that shape contemporary world politics, such as global political economy, international security, war, gender, and race. Furthermore, it addresses some of the main policy issues in the globalized world, including poverty, human rights, health (with particular emphasis on the recent global pandemic), and the environment. This introduction offers some arguments both for and against seeing globalization as an important new development in world politics. It also explains the various terms used to describe world politics and the academic field, particularly the use of ‘world politics’ rather than ‘international politics’ or ‘international relations’. Finally, it summarizes the main assumptions underlying realism, liberalism, Marxism, social constructivism, post-structuralism, post-colonialism, and feminism.
Edited by Dermot Hodson, Uwe Puetter, Sabine Saurugger, and John Peterson
The Institutions of the European Union is the key text for anyone wishing to understand the functions, powers, and composition of the EU’s institutions. Written and edited by a team of leading international experts, the text offers a comprehensive analysis and explanation of all the most important organizations and their roles in the governance and management of the EU. The fifth edition has been substantially revised, featuring a range of newly authored chapters and including coverage of the most important developments affecting the institutions of the European Union as they contend with the changing dynamics of European integration. Up-to-date chapters examine current challenges, including the rise of populism and how it is wielded by politicians to target EU institutions, the climate emergency, and the EU’s bold new policy commitments to make the Union climate neutral by 2050, as well as the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Authoritative yet accessible, The Institutions of the European Union is the best guide to how institutions work together to provide political direction, manage the European Union, govern policies, and integrate contrasting interests within the EU.
22. Economic and Monetary Union
This chapter introduces economic and monetary union (EMU), describingthe key components of EMU and what happens when countries join. EMU was the result of decades of collaboration and learning, divided here into three periods: 1969–91, from the agreement to creation to its inclusion in the Treaty on European Union (TEU); 1992–2002, from having the plans for EMU to the irrevocable fixing of exchange rates; and 2002 onwards, with EMU established and euro banknotes and coins circulating in member states. The chapter reviews various theoretical explanations, both economic and political, for the creation of EMU and considers some criticisms of EMU. The chapter discusses how EMU has fared under the global financial crisis, the sovereign debt crisis, and the COVID-19 pandemic. These crises highlighted various imperfections in the design of EMU and provided opportunities for further development. This chapter discusses changes made since 2009 to address those flaws and what may be yet to come.
29. The Future of the EU
This chapter is structured around four scenarios on the future of the European Union (EU): ‘Disintegration’, ‘Piecemeal Adjustment’, ‘Functional Federalism’, and ‘A European Sovereignty’. The EU is now facing the immense challenges of climate change, the accelerating digital transformation, Europe’s unstable neighborhood and the impact on Europe’s role in the world arising from the return of Great Power competition, all against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences. The perennial questions about the EU remain—how does it collectively amass sufficient political authority to address Europe’s challenges while maintaining its legitimacy? How can it be resilient as a Union while managing the deep diversity that characterizes Europe? Disintegrative fissures cannot be ignored. Piecemeal Adjustment continues to have resonance, as does Functional Federalism,. ‘A European Sovereignty’ sometimes defined as ‘strategic autonomy’ emerged on the political agenda with the election of French President Macron in May 2017.