Thomas Winzen (presenter) and Frank Schimmelfennig: Do Citizens Support the Differentiated Integration of Their Country?

A Centre for European Studies research event
Date7 July 2022
Time16:00 to 17:00

Chair: Sandra Kröger

Abstract: This paper examines the determinants of public opinion on differentiated integration in the European Union (EU). Specifically, it tests a ‘congruence hypothesis’ according to which public opinion is informed by the national experience of opt-outs and exclusions from full participation in EU policies. The study generally finds that support for differentiated integration strongly depends on the mode of differentiation. Even though ‘multi-speed differentiation’ is only temporary, it is evaluated more critically than durable treaty opt-outs establishing ‘multi-tier differentiation’. We suggest that citizens from opt-out countries oppose multi-speed differentiation out of concern that it would render their exemptions temporary, whereas citizens from new member states tend to be critical towards the often involuntary and discriminatory transitional arrangements that were imposed by the old member states.

Vita: Thomas Winzen is a Professor of European Politics and International Relations at the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf. His research focuses on the European Union, the role of parliaments in international affairs, and global governance more broadly, including the design of international organizations and transnational internet governance. Recent projects study the consequences of democratic backsliding for the European Union, differentiated European integration, parliamentary oversight in European Union decision-making, parliamentary bodies in international organizations, and communication standards development for the Internet.

ProviderCentre for European Studies

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