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The Member States of the European Union

The Member States of the European Union (2nd edn)

Simon Bulmer and Christian Lequesne
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date: 22 September 2021

p. 1868. Poland: An Awkward Partner Redeemed*locked

p. 1868. Poland: An Awkward Partner Redeemed*locked

  • Nathaniel Copsey

Abstract

This chapter examines the pattern of Poland’s relations with the European Union during the period 1989–2011. After the fall of communism, Poland took an early decision in 1989 to place European integration at the centre of its plans for democratization and modernization. Post-accession opinion in Poland on the EU was initially divided between an increasingly Europhile public and an occasionally Eurosceptic political class. By the time of the Polish Presidency of the EU in 2011, however, Poland had largely shed its reputation for awkwardness and had achieved a few policy successes, particularly in terms of relations with its Eastern neighbours. The chapter explains how Poland came to join the EU and assesses the impact of its EU membership on domestic politics, public opinion, institutions, governance, and public policy. It concludes by comparing Poland’s experience with those of its Visegrád neighbours, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovakia.

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