Moving Beyond Barriers
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Moving Beyond Barriers

Prospects for EU Citizenship

Edited by Sandra Seubert, Marcel Hoogenboom, Trudie Knijn, Sybe de Vries and Frans van Waarden

This book identifies, analyses and compares a variety of possible ‘barriers’ to the exercise of European citizenship and discusses ways to move beyond these barriers. It contributes in a multi-disciplinary way to a highly topical issue and offers new perspectives on EU citizenship in the sense that it critically analyses concepts of citizenship, the way EU citizenship is politically, legally and socially institutionalized, and elaborates alternatives to the current paths of realizing EU citizenship.
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Chapter 5: Accommodating rivalling claims of citizenship

Mónica Ferrín and Francis Cheneval


EU citizenship faces problems similar to other heterogeneous and fragmented political entities. This chapter reviews how the EU has managed to accommodate rivalling claims under a unique form of citizenship and how it deals with problems derived from the multi-layered nature of citizenship. In eight case studies, the chapter highlights institutional and substantive solutions that have stood the test of history and we draw lessons for the EU regarding the rationales of state formation, the inclusion of certain communities, and the link between community and territory. The case studies vary in terms of heterogeneity and territorial political power. All have faced problems concerning the coexistence of culturally distinguished communities within the same territorial borders. In recent years, two types of claims have developed in EU Member States: (1) too much interference of the EU in national matters; (2) economic asymmetry of the periphery against the ‘core’. One of the lessons from this chapter is that the EU is not facing conflicts framed around incompatible claims to unity of cultural identity, but conflicts regarding political competencies and economic strategies that can be tackled with structural reforms within the paradigms of federalism and democracy.

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