What Model for Uniting Europe?

9.0 Introduction: Competing Models of European Integration
9.1 Federalism
9.1.1 Problems with the federal vision
9.2 Confederalism
9.2.1 Proposals for more confederalism in the EU
9.3 The Networked Governance Model
9.3.1 Concerns about legitimacy and effectiveness
9.4 The Differentiated Integration Model
9.4.1 Differentiation to allow some countries to integrate more
9.5 Concluding Summary
Learning Objectives
  • to identify the pros and cons of having a more federal EU;
  • to analyze the factors that limit the introduction of more confederalism into the EU;
  • to evaluate the balance between federal and confederal elements in today's EU;
  • to identify the features of networked governance and analyze the arguments in favor of this model;
  • to evaluate the nature of and reasons for the existing elements of differentiated integration;
  • to evaluate the significance of the absence of political finality in the EU.

9.0 Introduction: Competing Models of European Integration

The politics of European integration concerns not just what the EU does (that is, its actual and proposed policies) but also how it is organized (in other words, its legal and institutional framework). In comparison to political systems such as today's US federal system, or the UN, the EU continues to undergo frequent institutional reform. It is thus an ongoing institutional project, which means that supporters and critics of the EU argue constantly over competing ...

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