The European policy of the German Social Democrats has undergone significant change since 1990. SPD policy has become more assertive in pursuing specific German interests, but is more aware of common European Union interests (Chapter 5). The party’s European policy has reflected the views of an increasingly broad range of domestic and European actors, but began to ‘lead’ opinion where it could in these policy relationships (Chapter 6). Whilst the SPD has become more keen to ‘modernise’ Germany to the realities of economic globalisation, it has constructed an EU social democratic model to offer its citizens security in change (Chapter 7). SPD policy has reflected the substantial developments in the policy environment in Germany, Europe and the world that have affected actors and structures in the SPD, Germany and Europe. Change brought about by German unification and the end of the Cold War, European integration and globalisation. This study will conclude by summarising what it reveals about SPD EU policy and German EU policy in general. For instance, what does it tell us about the role of ‘pragmatism’ in SPD policy? To what extent has SPD policy provided a synthesis of the views of various institutional, national and European actors and created a long-term and sustainable strategy? Finally, the conclusion investigates the prospects for future SPD and German EU policy within the shifting contexts of policy formation and implementation.
KeywordsEuropean Policy European Actor German Unification Constitutional Convention German Policy
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