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EU Enlargement Isn't Working - new report from LSE IDEAS

The Eurozone crisis, enlargement fatigue within EU states and a loss of confidence in the European project have made the prospect of EU membership much less attractive for neighbouring countries.

EUEnlargement CoverForty years after the accession of the UK, enlargement, once seen as the EU’s most effective foreign policy tool, is in peril.

This is the argument made in a new special report launched today by LSE IDEAS, the research centre for international affairs, diplomacy and grand strategy at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

The report, The Crisis of EU Enlargement, features contributions by leading academics and practitioners including former EU Commissioner for Enlargement, Günter Verheugen, and former LSE Philippe Roman Chair and Pulitzer Prize winner, Anne Applebaum.  The report examines the historical development of the EU’s enlargement strategy and the internal and external challenges facing the policy today.  

Commenting on these problems in the report, Günter Verheugen says:

“There is not much time and only a few options remain on the EU’s table.  The first is to continue with the past integration approach of muddling through, with a couple of countries performing well.  The other, and more preferable option, is to critically review the negative developments of the last decades and to draw the appropriate lessons.”

For enlargement to be a successful tool once again, the EU needs to apply the lessons of the past to today’s challenges and fix its flawed strategy. 

The full report with executive summary is available here: The Crisis of EU Enlargement

For more information please contact Daniel O’Connor, LSE Head of Press and Information on oconnord@lse.ac.uk or call 020 7955 7417.  

The editor of the report, Luc-André Brunet at LSE IDEAS, can be reached at l.brunet@lse.ac.uk or 020 7849 4950. 

The Crisis of EU Enlargement will be launched at an LSE public debate “The Future of EU Enlargement” on Tuesday 26 November, 6.30pm at the Hong Kong Theatre, LSE. The event is free and open to all.

26 November 2013.