Europeanization in the Monetary Sector, 1968–92

  • Guido Thiemeyer
Part of the The Palgrave Macmillan Transnational History Series book series (PMSTH)


Today, the common monetary policy is one of the most important aspects of the European Union. It is one of the policy fields in which Community institutions act like sovereign states. In particular, the European Commission and the Central Bank miss no opportunity to stress the significance and great success of the European Monetary Union, which came into being in 1999. Most existing accounts seem to suggest that there was a straightforward and even logical evolution from the beginnings of the supranational Common Market to the Monetary Union in the framework of the EU.1 From an historical perspective, however, this understanding of European integration is problematic for several reasons:
  • First, it maintains that the transition, since the 1950s, from Common Market to monetary union was inevitable. The European Union, therefore, is posited as the logical culmination of European history after the Second World War. Historical alternatives to the structure, geography, and economic aims of transnational and international relations in Europe since 1945 are completely neglected.

  • Secondly, it underestimates the complexity of the integration process in the monetary sector. The European Monetary Union was only one possible result of international economic development since 1945, and it is up to historians to ask why it was realized as it was. What were the alternatives, and why did they not come into being?

  • Thirdly, the following question arises: What did ‘Europe’ mean in this context? What concepts of ‘Europeanization’ existed in the monetary sector? In order to answer these questions, it is necessary to examine the motives behind European integration in the monetary sector, in order to show the driving forces which led to European monetary integration.


Monetary Policy Monetary Union Common Agricultural Policy European Monetary Union European Monetary System 
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© G. Thiemeyer 2010

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  • Guido Thiemeyer

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