Research Handbook on the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy
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Research Handbook on the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy

Edited by Steven Blockmans and Panos Koutrakos

In times of rapid change and unpredictability the European Union’s role in the world is sorely tested. How successfully the EU meets challenges such as war, terrorism and climate change, and how effectively the Union taps into opportunities like mobility and technological progress depends to a great extent on the ability of the EU’s institutions and member states to adopt and implement a comprehensive and integrated approach to external action. This Research Handbook examines the law, policy and practice of the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy, including the Common Security and Defence, and gauges its interactions with the other external policies of the Union (including trade, development, energy), as well as the evolving political and economic challenges that face the European Union.
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Steven Blockmans and Panos Koutrakos


This book identified the wide range of substantive, institutional, and procedural links that bring together the legal and policy aspects of the European Union’s Common Foreign and Security Policy. Having unpacked the development of the practice of CFSP and the Common Security and Defence Policy (including civilian missions, military operations, capabilities, and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction), the book then conceptualized the way in which these interact with other external policies in the fields of energy, sanctions, trade, development cooperation, humanitarian aid, health security, and cybersecurity, as well as the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice, and the European Neighbourhood Policy. This is multi-layered and fast-moving policy of a broad scope and a dynamic legal framework. The analysis, then, stepped back and examined CFSP against a broader conceptual canvas, reflecting on the type of actor that the EU has become, the third parties, expectations of its actorness, and the role of law and ethics in the development of the policy.

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