Analysing the impact of CSDP in the Western Balkans: EU strategic success or bureaucratic politics?

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper




ConferenceUACES 45th Annual Conference
Conference date(s)7/09/159/09/15

Publication details

DatePublished - 7 Sep 2015
Original languageEnglish


The EU Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is founded on the aspiration that the EU should have milieu shaping civilian and military capability (Solana, 2003). The Union moreover aspires to be an international security provider in a multipolar environment. In order to achieve these aspirations the EU needs to forge a common strategic culture based on the comprehensive approach (CA), utilising a common security and defence policy that represents more than 'normative power' (Manners, 2002), and more than the EU as a 'small power' (Toje, 2011). It needs to be a security ‘power’ (Biscop and Whitman, 2013).

How do these ambitions shape up in the Western Balkans, a region where arguably more than any other, CSDP appears to have achieved success? This paper analyses whether in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo, the CA adopted by the EU has been a successful strategic undertaking, or whether it is merely a manifestation of bureaucratic politics, with modest accomplishments which nevertheless contribute to stability in the Western Balkans and assist an EU accession process for former constituent parts of Yugoslavia.

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