The Relationship between Solidarity and National Identity

30 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2021

Date Written: September 6, 2021


The health and economic fallout from the recent Covid pandemic once again raised the question as to whether transnational solidarity is possible. In this article I discuss transnational solidarity in the space of the European Union (EU). Arguably, the European Court of Justice (ECJ), especially in its more recent case law, has missed opportunities to utilise and develop the concept of transnational solidarity more fully. The restrictive approach pursued by the ECJ would be justifiable if national identity played a key role in generating solidarity; after all, by definition, national identity is restricted to the national level. Given the potential importance of national identity as a precondition for solidarity, I present historical and theoretical evidence that the link between solidarity and national identity is not causal but conventional. This conclusion should encourage the ECJ to develop transnational solidarity.

Suggested Citation

Rieder, Clemens M, The Relationship between Solidarity and National Identity (September 6, 2021). Available at SSRN: or

Clemens M Rieder (Contact Author)

Queen's University Belfast ( email )

School of Law
Belfast BT7 1NN, BT7 1NN
United Kingdom


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