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Publié par Notre Europe


More than ever, Germany is today the focus of much attention on the European scene. The difficult negotiation over the assistance package to Greece and the setting up of a stabilisation fund has earned Chancellor Merkel bad press. Germany

has been castigated and blamed for a lack of vision for its reluctance to help its Eurozone partners who are also among its main clients. However, much of this criticism could be turned on its head. As Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa, President of Notre Europe, has recalled in a recent paper, no European country has ever consented to as big a transfer of sovereignty as Germany did when it accepted to do away with the Deutsche Mark. That, in and of itself, is sufficient to explain why she has found it difficult to tolerate the unruly behaviour of other Eurozone members. Moreover, it required great courage on the part of Mrs. Merkel to eventually accept the rescue package against a majority of German public opinion and the advice of some of her most prominent advisers. Nonetheless, the fact remains that Germany now finds itself in a leadership

position that it has not sought, and that it seems at times reluctant to exert. This is why it seems appropriate to discuss some of the factors that shape its European policy. To this end, Notre Europe has turned to a series of experts who examine the changes that have taken place at various levels. Can Germany really be considered more inward-looking than it used to be before? Is this a long-term trend? How can the evolution of German European policy be explained? What are the current driving actors and forces?

Contributions have been made by German (or Greek-German) experts and are completed by a British external point of view.

• Janis A. Emmanouilidis (EPC) and Almut Möller (DGAP) start by scrutinising Germany’s perception of EU’s integration and what they consider as a process of German European policy normalisation.

• Daniela Schwarzer (SWP) examines expectations from Germany’s specific relation to the Eurozone.

• Henrik Uterwedde (Franco-German Institut of Ludwigsburg) evaluates the specificity of Germany’s cooperative capitalism model and its constraints regarding EU’s futher integration.

• Stefan Seidendorf (Franco-German Institut of Ludwigsburg) looks over opinion polls to examine the evolution of German elites and the assertion of a more popular public opinion, regarding the EU.

• Timo Behr (Finnish Institute of International Affairs) explores the state of mind of German’s government when faced with the requirement of playing an active role in a more integrated European foreign policy.

• Finally, William E. Paterson (Aston Centre for Europe, Aston University) analyses the pressures on German European vocation and the risks of amore British European policy temptation.




See the complete paper : Etud-79- Germany Etud-79- Germany


Notre Europe (http://www.notre-europe.eu/) isthe guidance of Jacques Delors, who created Notre Europe in 1996, the association aims to “think a united Europe.”

Our ambition is to contribute to the current public debate by producing analyses and pertinent policy proposals that strive for a closer union of the peoples of Europe. We are equally devoted to promoting the active engagement of citizens and civil society in the process of community construction and the creation of a European public space.

In this vein, the staff of  Notre Europe directs research projects ; produces and disseminates analyses in the form of short notes, studies, and articles; and organises public debates and seminars. Its analyses and proposals are concentrated around four themes :

• Visions of Europe  The community method, the enlargement and deepening of the EU and the European project as a whole are a work in constant progress.

Notre Europe provides in-depth analysis and proposals that help find a path through the multitude of Europe’s possible futures.

• European Democracy in Action: Democracy is an everyday priority.

Notre Europe believes that European integration is a matter for every citizen, actor of civil society and level of authority within the Union.

 Notre Europe therefore seeks to identify promote ways of further democratising European governance.

• Cooperation, Competition, Solidarity: « Competition that stimulates, co-operation that strengthens, and solidarity that unites ». This, in essence, is the European contract as defined by Jacques Delors. True to this approach, Notre Europe explores and promotes innovative solutions in the fields of economic, social and sustainable development policy.

• Europe and World Governance: As an original model of governance in an increasingly open world, the European Union has a role to play on the international scene and in matters of world governance. Notre Europe seeks to help define this role.



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