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Amichai Magen and Laurent Pech

This chapter traces the origins and evolution of the concept of the idea and ideal of the rule of law within the EC/EU governance system. It proceeds to delineate the four main areas in which the rule of law forms a central pillar of EC/EU identity and activity. The chapter then provides a cross-cutting, critical review of the EU-rule of law nexus, identifying key debates where the concept of the rule of law plays a substantial role in contemporary EU studies, as well as where the EU governance system can be said to be lacking in terms of its adherence to the salient constitutive features of the rule of law. Throughout, the chapter places emphasis on the identification of key concepts, areas of activity, and debates so as to facilitate future research into the EU-rule of law nexus.