JOINT Research paper nº 21

How to Reduce the Impact of Internal Contestation, Regional Fragmentation and Multipolar Competition on EU Foreign and Security Policy

Data de publicació:
Sarah van Bentum, Caterina Bedin, Zachary Paikin, Gregor Walter-Drop, Steven Blockmans, Agnès Levallois and Tiffany Guendouz

JOINT Reseach Paper nº 21 (May 2023)

In a Union of 27 member states, differences in (geo)political interests, socio economic realities, historical trajectories and national identity construction constantly threaten the internal unity and thus also the external coherence of EUFSP. The following three factors and their mutually reinforcing interplay appear to have a significant impact on the creation and shaping of EU foreign and security policy, especially when it comes to managing international crises and conflicts: internal contestation, regional fragmentation and multipolar competition. The analysis in this paper draws on the main findings from nine case studies carried out under the Horizon 2020 project JOINT. The paper first assesses the (generally negative) impact of the three factors on EUFSP in these contexts of international crises, identifies common patterns and divergent approaches. The second part identifies strategies to mitigate and/ or reduce the (negative) impact of these challenges on EUFSP and points towards windows of opportunity to take action moving forward. The aim of the research is to provide experts and officials with ideas about how EU policy decision-making processes can enable greater coherence among EU institutions and member states in their response to international crises and conflicts.

Sarah van Bentum is Research Fellow at the Freie Universität Berlin and Scholar-in-Residence at the Federal Foreign Office of Germany.
Caterina Bedin is Research Fellow at the Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique (FRS).
Zachary Paikin is a researcher in EU foreign policy at the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) in Brussels.
Gregor Walter-Drop is Director of the Knowledge Exchange Lab (KEL) at the Cluster of Excellence “Contestations of the Liberal Script” at the Freie Universität Berlin.
Steven Blockmans is Research Director at CEPS. Agnès Levallois is Senior Research Fellow at FRS. Tiffany Guendouz is intern at FRS.