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Lezing | Studium Generale

Fort Europa heeft zijn inwoners nodig

Bernard Steunenberg

Cleveringaplaats 1
2311 BD Leiden
Zaal Zaal 005

[Deze lezing vindt plaats in het Engels]

European integration has become contested. Citizens no longer take it for granted and have become more critical of European policy. Often people seem to prefer local policy solutions in response to globalization problems. Furthermore, the EU is struggling with a number of important policy challenges. The euro-crisis still affects today’s fiscal and social-economic policy. The refugee-crisis has not yet been handled in a satisfactory way, causing severe tensions between various member states.

Current integration theories do not seem to have an answer to these developments. These theories, which have been developed in the past, focus on incremental changes in policies or ‘big deals’ between Europe’s national leaders. In both instances, citizens hardly play a role. How can we understand the role citizens play in European integration? And how do citizens fit in? In this talk we discuss these issues and focus on how more citizens’ involvement affects the way the Union is developing. After the Brexit vote it is at least clear that citizens do have an opinion, which needs to be integrated into the political debate on Europe’s future.


Professor Bernard Steunenberg is Professor of Public Administration at Leiden University. He has published extensively on European decision-making and the way in which national political systems are affected by European policy. Currently he is producing a MOOC on European policymaking and implementation with a focus on What does Europe do for you?.

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