Economics and Policies of an Enlarged Europe
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Economics and Policies of an Enlarged Europe

Carlo Altomonte and Mario Nava

Carlo Altomonte and Mario Nava have written a very rigorous text in an accessible and jargon-free style, ensuring easy acquisition of invaluable insights into the European economic set-up and the possible evolution of EU policies, including an update on the reform of the Growth and Stability Pact and of the 2007–13 Financial Perspectives.
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Chapter 1: The Multiple Dimensions of an Enlarged Europe

Carlo Altomonte and Mario Nava


1.1 THE HISTORICAL DIMENSION Looking at the geopolitical map of Europe at the beginning of the twentyfirst century, many unprecedented achievements characterise in various respects the evolution of the picture. For the first time, in fact, since Charlemagne’s Holy Roman Empire in the ninth century, most of the European continent, that is, nowadays around 400 millions of citizens, are again united and in peace. For the first time in the entire history of Europe, this unification has taken place peacefully, according to the democratic will of the European people. For the first time, at least since the last century, a set of countries have autonomously decided to relinquish to a supranational authority the control of one of the key symbols of a nation, the national currency, without however renouncing their political independence and their national identity.1 And the list could continue with many other innovations. It is then natural to wonder how all these processes could have happened in such a relatively short period of time (less than 60 years), and what have been the driving forces behind them. A good starting point is to bear in mind that in Europe, historically, every period of war has ended with one or more treaties which have deeply changed the nature of the cohabitation of the states in the continent. The Treaty of Westfalia in 1648 ended the Thirty Years’ War and balanced the power between European states, establishing the principles of individual sovereign nations that continue to shape the...

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