The European Union and the Insiders/Outsiders of Europe: Russia and the Post-Soviet Space

Sabine Fischer


The European Union is being perceived in Eastern Europe as an important actor, but with very different connotations. Some neighbours have membership ambitions and see the EU as a model (cf. the enlargement/democracy narrative). For others, relations with the EU are an instrument to balance regional relations (cf. the geopolitical narrative). Finally, some perceive the EU as striving to expand its influence beyond its borders (cf. the value empire narrative). The chapter investigates the discourses on the EU in the eastern neighbourhood and Russia. It starts from the assumption that perceptions in the region have a strong impact on the EU’s ability to pursue its policy goals. At the same time, EU policy influences debates in its partner countries. By examining this interrelationship this paper aims to understand the extent to which the EU is able to play the role of an important regional actor in the post-Soviet space.

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Review of European Studies   ISSN 1918-7173 (Print)   ISSN 1918-7181 (Online)

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