Introduction: The Predicaments of Differentiation

  • Erik O. EriksenEmail author


This chapter discusses the topicality and predicament of political differentiation in Europe. It presents the development of a differentiated Europe, and sets out some ways to conceptualise the phenomenon. The chapter looks at how differentiation has become increasingly entrenched in the legal framework of the EU, as several treaties have formalised possibilities for both enhanced cooperation and opt-outs or exceptions. Then, it introduces some potential negative effects of political differentiation, and how it can lead to dominance or arbitrary rule. Lastly, the chapter gives an overview of book.


Differentiation European integration Vertical and horizontal differentiation Democratic rule 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.ARENA Centre for European StudiesUniversity of OsloOsloNorway

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