The European Union in the World - PO831

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
(version 3)
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7 20 (10) MRS M Kutlay







This module focuses on the position of Europe and the EU in particular - what it does and how it does it - in the world, through the perceptions of the other. The first challenge of this broad approach is to tackle the question ‘what is Europe?’, by way of situating Europe between the regional and global change, and understanding its multifaceted, multi-actor and multi-level environment and associated with it challenges, in the increasingly inter-dependent and inter-polar world. As part of the exercise we will focus more specifically on EU actorness reiterated through the changing modes of governance – from disciplinary and hierarchical, to more adaptable and from a distance – and democracy promotion policies, to understand how it behaves vis-à-vis the outside world. Premised on this, we will examine EU actorness in practical terms by referring to EU interactions with ‘the other’ – from the neighbourhood, BRICS, to US, and Russia. The objective is to cross-compare ‘what the EU is’ and ‘what it does’ to enable wider generalisations of ‘what kind of transformative power the EU is?’ today, in this increasingly globalising world.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

11 two-hour lecture/seminars

Method of assessment

100% coursework (in-class presentation (10%), a position paper for presentation (20%), and research based essay of = 4000 words (70%))

Indicative reading

Bickerton, C. (2013) European Integration: from Nation-states to Member-states (OUP)
Boening, A., Kremer, J-F., and van Loon, A. (eds.) Global Power Europe, Vol. 1 & 2. Berlin 2013
Bretherton C., Vogler, J. (2006), The European Union as Global Actor. London, Routledge.
Chakrabarty, D. (2007) Provincialising Europe: Postcolonial Thought and Historical Difference (Princeston University Press)
Cooper, R. (2004). The Breaking of Nations: Order and Chaos in the Twenty-First Century. Atlantic Monthly Press.
Ginsberg R.(2001), The European Union in International Politics. Baptism by Fire. Oxford, Rozman & Littlefield.
Hill C., Smith M. (eds.) (2005), International Relations and the European Union (OUP)*** particularly recommended for beginners
Leonard, M (2005) Why Europe will Run in the 21st Century (London: Fourth Estate)
Lucarelli, S. and Fioramonti, L. (2011) External Perceptions of the EU as a Global Actor. Routledge

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will:-
Have a good understanding of the complex inter-relationship between Europe, EU and the rest of the world, with particular reference to the debates surrounding the issues of globalisation, europeanisation and integration.
Have a good understanding of the major developments in EU Foreign Policy at the regional and global levels.
Understand the identity of the EU as an international actor, including the controversies and challenges it raises.
Be able to critically analyse the alleged role of the EU as normative / civilian actor in terms of interest- versus values-driven policy.
Be able place the role of Europe and the EU in its historical and larger theoretical context.
Be familiar with core concepts, theories and debates on global change and European eternal relations

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