The European Union: A Politically Incorrect View
AbstractIn this paper, we present our view of the recent evolution of European integration. We first briefly describe the main features of the institution and decision making process in the European Union, with particular attention to the debate between federalists and super nationalists. We then identify two key issues in the process of European integration: 1) an emphasis on institutional balance' based on a complex web of institutions with overlapping jurisdiction; 2) A conflict between a dirigiste versus a more laissez faire approach to government. We argue that the first problem leads to a lack of clarity in the allocation of powers between European institutions, confusion in the allocation of prerogatives between national governments and EU institutions, and lack of transparency and accountability. This dirigiste culture produces verbose rhetoric, which moves the European policy debate in the wrong direction. We then study how these problems play out in four important areas: employment policies, culture and scientific research, foreign and defense policies, and fiscal policy. Finally, we study the implications of the recently proposed European Constitution as a potential solution of these two problems.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10342.
Date of creation: Mar 2004
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Other versions of this item:
- Alberto Alesina & Roberto Perotti, 2004. "The European Union: A Politically Incorrect View," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2029, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2004-06-07 (All new papers)
- NEP-EEC-2004-06-07 (European Economics)
- NEP-MAC-2004-03-07 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-PKE-2004-03-07 (Post Keynesian Economics)
- NEP-POL-2004-03-07 (Positive Political Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alberto Alesina & Ignazio Angeloni & Ludger Schuknecht, 2001.
"What Does the European Union Do?,"
NBER Working Papers
8647, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Alberto Alesina & Ignazio Angeloni & Ludger Schuknecht, 2001. "What Does the European Union Do?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1935, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Schuknecht, Ludger & Angeloni, Ignazio & Alesina, Alberto, 2005. "What Does The European Union Do?," Scholarly Articles 4553010, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Alesina, Alberto F & Angeloni, Ignazio & Schuknecht, Ludger, 2002. "What Does the European Union Do?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3115, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Alberto Alesina & Ignazio Angeloni & Ludger Schuknecht, 2002. "What Does the European Union Do?," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 61, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
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