Germany and Europe
European integration has remained a constitutional principal since the foundation of the Federal Republic of Germany. The partial shift of state sovereignty from the national to the European level contributed substantially to achieving and sustaining peace and prosperity, as well as regaining international acceptance and sovereignty of Germany in international politics. Moreover, this shift of sovereignty helped in reducing reservations of international partners vis-à-vis Germany that increased its centrality in European politics from the fifties until it was finally re-united in 1990.
Due to the Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC), the dependence of the German industry on trade export, the traditional embedding into the European structures which is also a consequence of German history, and because of Germany’s historical and moral obligation towards the Central and Eastern European countries, the deepening and widening of the European Union was and remains a key interest of German foreign policy.
Given the size of its population, its economic potential and its central geographic location, Germany is of major importance for any further development the European integration process.
As a result of this background, Germany’s European policy and Germany’s role in Europe are major fields of research for the IEP. Related research projects, publications and activities deal with the following aspects:
- historical background and conditions of German European policy
- basic understandings and key concepts of European policy as seen from Germany and other EU member states
- the constitutional framework conditions of German European policy
- German federalism and European integration
- the external framework conditions of German European policy
- interests, strategies and prospects of German European policy in selected policy areas
- Germany’s Council Presidencies in the EC/EU
- long-term trends and the question of continuity and change of Germany’s European policy
- perceptions of Germany’s European policy from the point of view of partner countries
Dr. Katrin Böttger
Henrik von Homeyer