JOINT Reseach Paper nº 24

Unlocking EU foreign and security potential: Measures to mitigate internal contestation, regional fragmentation and multipolar competition

Fecha de publicación:
Sarah van Bentum and Gregor Walter-Drop

JOINT Reseach papers nº 24 (February 2024)

This paper investigates the potential avenues available to the European Union in implementing innovative strategies to mitigate challenges within its foreign and security policy (EUFSP) arising from three primary contextual elements: internal contestation, regional fragmentation and multipolar competition. The paper emphasises the significance of achieving a delicate equilibrium between ameliorating disagreements within the EU and among member states while simultaneously addressing global issues and international crises shaped by the fragmentation of state and regional governance mechanisms as well as great power rivalry. These issues often intersect with fundamental national interests and identity of EU member states, thus creating or exacerbating internal contestation. The paper identifies mitigation measures that have already been applied by the EU in international conflict and crisis management, yet sometimes in a more adhoc fashion than as a structured and planned procedure. The paper highlights institutional, functional and diplomatic-coalitional measures that can reduce the negative impact of these factors and enhance the long-term viability of EUFSP.