EU Enlargement, Democratisation and Domestic Politics in Post-Communist Europe: Patterns and Problems of Motivation

  • Geoffrey Pridham


Attention now shifts to the other side in the interactive dynamics of EU accession, namely the domestic politics of candidate countries. As argued in Chapter 1, pressures from here may either help or hinder national governments in their pursuit of membership; and, these are best analysed by differentiating between levels of political systems in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). The scope for such interactions is well summarised by an early text on European integration:

The [European] Community process is not confined to what takes place within the formal framework of the Community institutions. Rather it embraces a network of relationships and contacts among national policy-makers in the different member states, both directly through involvement in the Community arena and indirectly as that arena impinges on national policy processes. Consequently, the Community process … can be analysed only as the tip of a much larger iceberg formed by the domestic contexts that set constraints on each member government. In addition national policy-makers are caught up in other kinds of transnational activities including other international agencies and a variety of informal links both multilateral and bilateral. These arenas of discussion sometimes complement or reinforce the Community process, but on occasion may complicate or undermine it.1


European Integration Political Elite National Sovereignty Domestic Politics Accession Country 
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Copyright information

© Geoffrey Pridham 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoffrey Pridham
    • 1
  1. 1.University of BristolUK

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