International Affairs

European Union is a political and economic integration between 28 countries. Members of the union are regulated the same political and economic law. The rules allow free movement of people, goods, and services. The theory of constructivism critically explains the integration of the European Union. The theory helps to integrate members using the same social norms and value. As such, all members are supposed to respect each other to enjoy the benefits associated with the union. The integration helps members to develop an outstanding interest between each other. For example, the theory encourages members to engage in trading and other economic activities such as manufacturing to promote regional growth. Rationalism is another theory, which is used to explain the interaction in the European Union. The theory influences political perception among members. Rationalism influence how rules are made in the region. For instance, the theory influenced members create rules such as costly non-tariff barrier that encourage free movement of products within the region as a way of improving their relationship. Veto player is another theory that was used to explain the European Union association. The theory was mostly applied when making a decision. Based on political perception, a state could use the theory to decline a decision. For instance, the union required that a motion can pass if 62 percent of the states agree.

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According to Gordon and Dariusz, the European Union is mostly based on intergovernmentalism theory. The theory encourages members to engage in the creation of rules that govern their operations. Additionally, the theory insists that the union can only take action once the majority of states agree with a particular activity. For instance, when the union is engaging in a treaty or agreement such as Libson, all members must sign to show their participation. Each member has a unique political system. Therefore, intergovernmentalism ensures that the union observes the political system among members before making any ruling.

The European Union do not pay much attention to supranationalism theory. The theory regulates the kind of activities that members engage. For instance, it regulates the competition among members as a way of promoting regional development. In this theoretical perspective, power is given to an authority above the state level. However, this concept can make a rule based on a particular state, which may disadvantage others.



Clark, Gordon L., and Dariusz Wójcik, eds. The New Oxford Handbook of Economic Geography. Oxford University Press, 2018.

Hill, Christopher, Michael Smith, and Sophie Vanhoonacker, eds. International relations and the European Union. Oxford University Press, 2017.

Papadimitriou, Dimitris. Negotiating the new Europe: the European Union and Eastern Europe. New York, NY: Routledge, 2018.

Webber, Douglas. “How likely is it that the European Union will dis integrate? A critical analysis of competing theoretical perspectives.” European Journal of International Relations 20, no. 2 (2014): 341-365.