The EU's Model of Regional Integration in a Functionally Differentiated World Society
Chapter 15 in: Andreas Grimmel (ed.): The Crisis of the European Union: Challenges, Analyses, Solutions (Abingdon: Routledge, 2017)
15 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2017
Date Written: April 26, 2017
This chapter argues that the starting point for improving the EU’s problem solving capacities is to understand its location in world society and the societal functions it is striving to fulfil. The EU is located ‘in-between’ European nation states and the global world. As such the EU can also be understood as an interface between the member states and the rest of the world. This is also reflected in its hybrid institutional architecture which combines hierarchical governing elements characteristic of states with heterarchcial governance elements. The core element of this hybridity is the way the EU combines territorial and functionally differentiated dimensions of society in so far as the EU, simultaneously, is a territorial delineated unit and a conglomerate of functional regimes. This hybridity implies that the EU, in its present form, is ill-suited to take over core stat functions so far exercised by its Member States. Whereas the evolution of the EU until the outbreak of the financial crisis contributed to a undermining of Member State problem solving capacities, the EU’s objective and substantial policies should be re-framed in a manner which supports rather than undermines the exercise of such capacities.
Keywords: EU; European Union; Integration; Crisis; Systems Theory; EU Law; European Law; Law; States; Nation States
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