Theory Of European Integration

2578 Words11 Pages
To this day, an analysis of the European Integration cannot be done unless the theories of neo-functionalism and Intergovernmentalism are not confronted. It can be said that these remain the most comprehensive and widely accepted theories of European Integration by the finest researchers of Regional Integration. This research paper contextualises the prevailing theories of European integration and this paper deploys the conceptual distinctions between Neo-functionalism and Intergovernmentalism. Lasting peace and stable economic system was demanded in the aftermath of the Second World War. The European Union process emerged out of that ground and the institutionalization of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1951 paved the way to ensuring…show more content…
As this paper examines both theories, the guiding questions are as follows: How do the theories under examination explain the dynamic of political and economic integration, and to what extent are they capable of envisaging the European Union? This paper tries to identify the criticisms to the theories and compare the applicability of these models. The thesis argues that no single approach can fully account the economic policy making of decision makers in the European Union. Hence, both theories still exist in the discourse of integration. Furthermore, this paper argues that although both may prevail, one shall establish better assumptions than the other. Thus, it will be discussed that Intergovernmentalism established a more comprehensive argument. This topic is timeless as it is a well-discussed approach in the study of International Relations. In fact, there are a numerous efforts to evaluate the validity of these models of integration. This is an incentive for future researchers to evaluate the applicability of such models to current situation in the European…show more content…
The functional spillover suggests that the union in one economic sector will affect integration in other similar fields in order for them to function together properly. For example, transportation is central to the integration of coal and steel sectors in order for it to function smoothly. Thus transport policies are established to ensure rapid mobilization of necessary raw materials. Political Spillover refers to the political pressures that are exerted by national elites and will stimulate more integration. In a political spillover, certain interest groups will be making efforts to pursue their interests. Having realised that their interests are best served with the supranational bodies rather than domestic ones, the political elites that represent the groups shall be in favour of the political integration and shift their loyalties to the a new center, whose organizations have power over sovereign national states. (Eilstrup-Sangiovanni, 2006) In advancing these hypotheses, the practitioners of this theory initially aims for it to be the grand theory in describing and explaining regional integrations. (Cini & Borganna
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