Political legitimacy and the European crisis: analysis of a faltering project

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The European Union is facing multiple crises: the euro and sovereign debt crisis puts into question its economic and social cohesion as well as the rules of coexistence within the Economic and Monetary Union; the refugee crisis brought to the fore a high degree of disagreement among member states as to the duties of mutual solidarity and assistance; Brexit highlighted the need to continuously justify EU membership (Britain being the most evident, but not at all the only case in which public opinion sees membership with deep scepticism), and to address the social and economic roots of dissatisfaction with the EU – inasmuch as EU-internal, economically motivated migration has been one of the key issues of the ‘leave’ campaign; the security crisis put into question the Schengen agreement and the mutual trust between member states in security issues. The political conundrum currently challenging the EU calls for reflection on what went wrong with the process of European integration in the first place. The essay offers a possible diagnosis and traces a number of scenarios for the future development of the European Union.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Politics and Society
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2017


  • European crisis
  • Euro crisis
  • Refugee crisis
  • Political integration
  • EU governance


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