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Consociational Democracy and Nordic Differentiated Integration in the European Union Mobile researcher: Benjamin Leruth, UK

Tildelt: kr 0,16 mill.

This project aims at providing a better understanding of the relationship between the concepts of differentiated integration and consensual democracy, by analysing the evolution of relations between the European Union and Nordic States, especially in the case of Norway. What kind of European integration is sought by Norway and why? Why did relations between Nordic States and the European institutions evolve in different ways? How do concerns about EU democracy shape the politics of differentiation in the Nordic Member States? Entitled 'Consociational Democracy and Nordic Differentiated Integration in the European Union', this project precisely aims at giving tentative answers to these questions. A comparison between the five Nordic States is provided. The existing academic literature on differentiated integration ignores the impact of consensual democracy, adopting a state-centric (or government-centric) position in order to explain differentiated integration. Moreover, theories on differentiated integrat ion have often been applied to existing members of a supranational organisation such as the European Union. Hence, this project also aims at contributing to the literature by taking account of the various aspects of consensual democracies, and by applying the notion of differentiated integration in the case of Norway and Iceland as non-Member States and EEA / Schengen members. Overall, the results obtained will not only be beneficiary for IR officials in government and in partner organisations of the con sidered States by analysing the relations between both parties, but it may also have uses for (non-)members of other regional organisations in understanding how consensual democracies shape differentiated integration.