Party Positions Toward Differentiated Integration: The Visegrad Group in a Comparative Perspective
44 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2022
Date Written: June 28, 2022
Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, in diplomatic terms known as the Visegrad Group, or V4, used to be the frontrunners of democratic transformation in Central and Eastern Europe. However, more recently, their attitudes toward various aspects of European integration underlined the heterogeneity of the enlarged EU and played an important reference point in the debates about the prospects for differentiated integration (DI). But while in diplomatic terms the Visegrad Group seems to build a block in many contemporary EU debates, can we observe a similar set of dynamics in these countries related to party politics and DI? Our goal in this working paper is to situate the case of the V4 in a comparative regional perspective and to address two major research questions: How salient is DI for political parties? How heterogeneous are the party positions toward DI? We do so primarily relying on manifesto data and newly collected data regarding the salience of DI in national parliamentary debates.
Keywords: Differentiated integration, European Union, party positions, Visegrad Group
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