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“Yearbook of European Integration 2019”

Europe has cast a ballot: From 23 to 26 May 2019, about 400 million citizens in 28 EU Member States were to elect 751 Members to the European Parliament. Against the backdrop of declining voter turnout throughout the past years, there had been major concerns that a persisting lack of interest would cause low turnouts also for the 40th anniversary of direct elections to the European Parliament. But the mobilization of civil society for months and increasing European awareness in light of the exit negoti­a­tions between the European Union and the United Kingdom repre­sented a turning point in this trend: Voter turnout reached 50.6 percent across Europe, the highest turnout since the elections to the European Parliament in 1994.

However, a sour taste soon mingled with this success: The newly elected, yet more fragmented European Parliament could not reach agreement on a proposal for the renewal of the European Commis­sion’s presi­dency. The so-called “Spitzenkan­di­daten” procedure (which was not favoured by the European Union heads of state and government to begin with) turned out as an empty shell, and French President Emmanuel Macron could quickly prevail with his nomination proposal: the German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen who had not been part of the “Spitzenkan­di­daten” procedure. The next elections in 2024 will probably indicate whether this procedure will become fictious.

For the European elections in 2019 Werner Weidenfeld in his article Bilanz never­theless recog­nizes a greater visibility of European “Spitzenkan­di­daten” in the media. He further evaluates this year’s elections as a historical turning point in the history of the European elections since 1979. Manuel Müller comple­ments this assessment in his article Die Europawahlen: Neue Macht­struk­turen with a compre­hensive analysis of the election results. Christian Raphael, Darius Ribbe and Wolfgang Wessels demon­strate in their contri­bution Die Europa­politik in der wissenschaftlichen Debatte that euroscep­tical positions present in the European election campaign have also found their way into the scien­tific analysis of European politics.

The Yearbook of European Integration published by the Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP) in Berlin documents and assesses the European integration process from 1980 to the present. The result of 39 years of continuous work is a uniquely compre­hensive account of European contem­porary history. The “Yearbook of European Integration 2019” continues that tradition. In about 106 articles, authors trace devel­op­ments in European politics in their field of research priority in the reporting period 2018/19. They supply infor­mation on the work of the EU insti­tu­tions, the devel­op­ments of different policy areas in the EU, Europe’s role in global politics and the member and candidate states’ European policy.

Order            Table of Contents / Foreword

Werner Weidenfeld/Wolfgang Wessels (Ed.):

Jahrbuch der Europäischen Integration 2019,

Nomos Verlag, Baden-Baden 2019, 570 p., 89,- EURO

ISBN 978–3‑8487–5775‑6

The book can be ordered at the Nomos Shop.

The “Yearbook of European Integration” is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office. The IEP alone is respon­sible for the contents.