Conflict, Institutional Change, and Development in the Era of Globalization
New Thinking in Political Economy series
Edited by Joachim Ahrens, Rolf Caspers and Janina Weingarth
Chapter 6: The European Union’s Foreign Policy: Regional Profile and Global Reach
6. The European Union's Foreign Policy: Regional Profile and Global Reach Udo Diedrichs 1. THE DYNAMICS OF CHANGE IN EU FOREIGN POLICY: INTER-REGIONALISM AS AN OPPORTUNITY AND A CHALLENGE After the end of the Cold War, the European Union had to adjust to a dramatically transformed international landscape. Patterns of regional integration and cooperation combined with a global drive for cross-border transactions strengthened the need to manage relations between the emerging regional areas (Telo, 2001). The European Union has been a key player in this context; be it transatlantic relations, the EU-Mediterranean Policy, contacts with Latin America or Asia, to name only a few examples: since the 1990s a growing dynamics could be observed in the establishment of interregional forms of cooperation by the EU, which itself appeared to be a 'natural' answer to the challenges of globalization and (macro)regionalization. However, in contrast to its traditional perception and intention, the Union has become much more hesitant in trying to export its own model of governance to other world regions in recent years. The optimism that once had marked EU efforts in presenting its own experience as an example that could be followed in different regional contexts has given way to a much more modest, pragmatic and culturally sophisticated understanding of the limits and potentials of cooperation and integration on the international scale. In this sense, the EU has tried to pursue a mixed approach which combines the establishment of close links with other world regions with a number of...
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