The European Council and EU boundaries. (In)formal competences, institutional position and external activities in the context of (de)bordering processes at the time of the immigration crises
The institutional reform of the European Union, especially as introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon, has led to the strengthening of some of the actors within the political system of this integration grouping. The European Council is one of the winners of these developments, which is visible – among other things – in the fields considered to be of key importance for the European project, for example external activities. This analysis aims at testing the dynamism of the decision-making process of the European council in the context of the immigration crisis of 2015. It tries to approach the issue conceptually, combining the grand theories of the European studies with the theoretical concepts of the still emerging discipline of border studies. This empirical analysis is based on a content analysis of European Council summits’ Conclusions. The author claims that the European Council has not only become a key platform for deciding about the most pressing issues within the European Union, but also that its approach to the Union’s borders has evolved towards the rebordering of its edges, when structuring the relations with its neighborhood.
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