Enlargement is widely hailed as the EU’s most successful foreign policy tool. Over the past four decades, the European Community (which became the European Union in 1993) managed to transform itself from a club of six Western European democracies to the world’s largest economy, encompassing 28 countries and half a billion people. The recent financial crisis, however, has given rise to doubts about the viability and the attractiveness of the EU model. In this context of soft power crisis, the EU has a policy problem, that, according to Günter Verheugen, ‘the enlargement process now lacks any strategic orientation’. Enlargement faces daunting challenges both internally and with respect to its neighbours. If the EU hopes to revive its most successful foreign policy tool, it must reconsider why it has been successful in the past and integrate these lessons to develop a new strategy.
Enlargement Since 2000: Too Much Too Soon?
Hard-won but Vital: EU Enlargement in Historical Perspective
N. Piers Ludlow
The Greek Paradox
Reconditioning the ‘Return to Europe’: The Influence of Spanish Accession in Shaping the EU’s Eastern Enlargement Process
Cristina Blanco Sío-López
Does Eastern Europe Still Exist?
Enlargement Fatigue and its Impact on the Enlargement Process in the Western Balkans
John O’ Brennan
The End of the Cold War, EU Enlargement and the EU-Russian Relationship
Is the European Neighbourhood Policy a Substitute for Enlargement?
Please note that the final piece in this report has been revised since its original publication. Please use the version included here for all citations.