The European Union, the United States and Global Public Goods: Competing Models or Two Sides of the Same Coin?

Part of the Palgrave Studies in European Union Politics book series (PSEUP)


As readers may well already know, much of the debate about the relationship between the European Union (EU), the United States (US) and world order has recently been conducted in terms of dichotomies. The EU, it appears is Venus and the US is Mars; the EU is multilateral, the US unilateral; the EU is a ‘trading state’, the US a ‘warrior state’; similarly, the EU is a ‘civilian power’ and the US a ‘martial power’ (Kagan 2003; Pollack 2003; Smith 2004; Lindberg 2005; and many others). Life leads us to expect that the contrasts in theory and in rhetoric are likely to be more stark and unqualified than they are in reality, and that EU and US self-understandings and role performance are likely to intersect and overlap in the development and conduct of policy, but these devices are useful as analytical prompts that lead us to sharpen our questions and to apply them to empirical cases.


United States European Union Foreign Policy World Order Good World 
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© Michael Smith 2011

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