UBC 2007: Europe at beginning of 21st Century

UBC 2007: Europe at beginning of 21st Century

"Europe at the Beginning of the 21st Century:

Opportunities and Challenges"


Finn Laursen

CRC in EU Studies

Director, EU Centre of Excellence

Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada

Background paper prepared for final keynote speech at conference at UBC, Vancouver, 19 April 2007



Where are we today?

- Increasing functional scope: From coal and steel to EMU and Political Union

- Increasing membership: From 6 to 27

- Improving institutions: More QMV and EP involvement

How did we get there?

- Spill-over and unintended consequences

- Series of rational grand bargains

- Agency: ideas and leaders

Current challenges

- Further enlargements: towards EU-35 and beyond

- Policy reforms: CAP, employment, etc

- Institutional reforms: efficiency and legitimacy

- Political entrepreneurship

Scenarios for the future

- A wider and stronger Union

- A wider, but weaker Union

- A more flexible Union

- A disintegrating Union


Dr. Finn Laursen