CIAO DATE: 09/03

International Spectator

The International Spectator

Volume XXXVIII No.2 (April - June 2003)


IAI Library Notes
By Maritza Cricorian



Contrôler l'Europe : pouvoirs et responsabilité dans l'Unione européenne/ Magnette. - Bruxelles : Editions de l'Université de Bruxelles, c2003. - (Etudes européennes). - ISBN 2-8004-1306-9
An analysis of the question of democratic legitimacy in Western Europe, this book gives a broad overview of the recent dispute between politicians and analysts on whether to reform EU rules and procedures by simply adapting the institutions or to refound the Union with a constitution. The study is carried out in various stages: following a theoretical introduction on the concepts of democracy, representation and responsibility in a union of states, the author analyses the implementation of the principle of responsibility in the parliamentary system, with particular reference to the Commission, the European Central Bank and the European Council. Hence, the mechanism of vigilance des particulières in the Union's judicial system, the right of petition and recourse to arbitration.

Concluding the discussion between souverainistes and republicains, the author states that the EU has not yet developed a model of responsibility suited to its internal organisation of power: responsibility requires that acts be ascribable to a defined centre of power, in the same way as a representative democracy requires a strong political identity.

The EU & Russia : the promise of partnership / by John Pinder & Yuri Shishkov. - London : The Federal Trust, c2002. - 153 p. - ISBN 1-903-40314-6
A two-author effort on the partnership between the European Union and Russia, this book is meant not only to describe the current situation, but also, by pointing out the reciprocal benefits of the partnership, to give indications on the future and how it can be improved, especially with regard to community policies. The first chapter deals with the EU's economic policies towards Russia; the second analyses Russia's economic transition and draw recommendations for Union policy; the third chapter presents Russia's policies towards the EU; the fourth examines the Union's Common Strategy on Russia, providing indications on how to strengthen economic policies and CFSP; the fifth and final chapter summarises the suggestions made with particular reference to the institutional reforms underway.

The EU & Ukraine : neighbours, friends, partners? / edited by Ann Lewis. - London : The Federal Trust, c2002. - 319 p. - ISBN 1-903403-18-9
Based on a few papers presented at a conference organised by TEPSA in Brussels in 2001, this book paints a portrait of the Ukraine today. Starting out from independence, achieved just over a decade ago, it surveys the country's prospects for the future and, above all, its relations with the EU. The book is divided into an historical introduction and five sections: the first section presents three points of view on EU-Ukraine relations (Ukrainian, European and US); the second is dedicated to political issues; the third to economic matters, the fourth to foreign and defence policy and regional relations; the fifth focuses on Euro-Ukrainian relations. Each section is made up of various chapters written by authors from either the Ukraine or Europe.

Three useful appendices provide the texts of a brief guide, put out by the Delegation of the EC in Ukraine, to the partnership and cooperation agreement signed in June 1994, the definition of Ukraine's integration policy towards the EU as approved by presidential decree in June 1998 and the European Council Common Strategy on Ukraine adopted by the European Council of December 1999.

Fifteen into one? : the European Union and its member states / edited by Wolfgang Wessels, Andreas Maurer and Jürgen Mittag. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c2003. - (European policy research unit series). - ISBN 0-7190-5849-X
Produced by a project that was part of broader research study on European governance, this book is made up of a number of essays - 15, like the EU member states - written by as many authors on the basis of a common outline. The aim of the book/project is to analyse the evolution of the European political system and the impact of the European Treaties, especially Maastricht, on the single member countries at the national level: thus, a two-level game. In other words, the book focuses on the reaction and institutional adaptations of the member countries to the challenges posed by European integration. It highlights convergences and divergences, but without trying to establish a single model. Equally important "transversal" themes are the decision-making and the participation of national institutions - divided into "strong" and "weak", corresponding substantially to governmental and non-governmental structures - in the European Union and the evolution of the state in Western Europe. The method adopted is neo-institutionalist.

Multinational corporations and European regional systems of innovation / AJohn Cantwell and Simona Iammarino. - London : Routledge, c2003. - xvi, 199 p. - (Studies in global competition ; v.18) - ISBN 0-415-27140-1
In the conviction that, if production is concentrated in space, innovation is even more so, the authors of this book set out to fill one of the gaps of the most recent economic research: not only the spatial dimension in the study of technological innovation, but also the sub-national concentration of technological activity in Europe, foreign ownership of technological/innovative activity and the link between local and global processes. More specifically, using a theoretical approach drawn from evolutionary theory, they deal with the interaction between multinationals and local resources in creating new competences in some of the regions of the EU, in particular, Italy (Chapter 5), the UK (Chapter 6), Germany (Chapter 7) and France (Chapter 8). The main theme is that there is a geographic hierarchy among regional centres within a single national system, but also across European national borders. The final chapter, the tenth, suggests some lines of study for future research.

The politics today companion to West European politics/ Geoffrey K. Roberts and Patricia Hogwood. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c2003. - viii, 194 p. - (Politics today). - ISBN 0-7190-5421-4 (pbk)
A fun reference tool that can be appreciated not only by the students of European affairs for whom it was written, but also by non-specialist interested in knowing more about contemporary European affairs. The book is set up like a kind of dictionary divided into five sections: the first is dedicated to "events, groupings and developments", from A for "acquis communautaire" to Y for "Young Turks' revolt"; the second contains the biographies of the most important European political figures; the third is a list of acronyms and short names for political parties, organisations, etc; the fourth is a chronology, especially with respect to the main political actors and subjects studied in university courses (UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain); the fifth gives sets of geopolitical data for 19 European countries and three international organisations (Council of Europe, EU, NATO). Cross references send the reader back and forth like hypertext.

Transatlantic relations

Agricultural policy reform : politics and process in the EU and US in the 1990s / Wayne Moyer, Tim Josling. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c2002. - xvi, 271 p. - (Global environmental governance series). - ISBN 0-7546-3050-1
This book is the result of a research project started in 1996 as the sequel to another (1990) and carried out between 1997 and 1998, with interviews in the field (37) with exponents of European and US agricultural policy. There are eleven chapters in addition to the first, introductory chapter: the second provides the analytical framework for the farm policy reform; the third introduces the concept of paradigm shift; the fourth reconstructs the collapse of the Uruguay Round; the fifth describes the 1990 Farm Bill and its impact on US agricultural policy; the sixth studies the 1992 MacSharry Reform of CAP; the seventh goes over US-EC bilateral negotiations up to the final Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture; the eighth recalls the 1996 Farm Bill; the ninth the EU's Agenda 2000; the tenth outlines the prospects for the next WTO Round; the eleventh draws a comparison between the processes of reform in the US and in Europe; the twelfth and last chapter describes the future prospects of the reform processes.

The future of the transatlantic defense community : final report of the CSIS Commission on Transatlantic Security and Industrial Cooperation in the Twenty-first Century / Simon Serfaty... [et al.]. - Washington : CSIS Press, c2003. - XIV, 74 p. - (CSIS panel report). - ISBN 0-89206-425-0
The report contains three documents adopted by the joint US-European Commission during 2002: a Declaration of Common Objectives, an Agenda for Action for the governments and industries of the United States and Europe, and a analysis on the future of the transatlantic defence community. The latter is in turn divided into four parts: one on the technological, economic and political context of transatlantic industrial cooperation in defence; the second on the various factors that influence this cooperation (risks, obstacles and benefits); a third on the lessons to be drawn from past experiences and cooperation; a fourth on the future of the Transatlantic Defence Community. Particularly interesting and useful are the comparative tables in the appendix to the paper: on NATO defence expenditures, transatlantic comparisons on defence spending, total R&D in percent of GDP, forms of cooperation and case studies in defence industrial cooperation.

Hegemonic globalisation : U.S. centrality and global strategy in the emerging world order / Thanh Duong. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c2002. - xiv, 366 p. - ISBN 0-7546-3013-7
The product of a doctoral thesis completed in 2000, this essay offers a thorough study of the foreign policy strategy of the United States and, more precisely, its strategy of "hegemonic globalisation", also in relation to other regional powers. The book is divided into three sections: the first presents the theories and methods used for the research and defines the concepts of power and hegemony; the second illustrates the strategies employed by the US since the Cold War to lay the basis for its global power and hegemonise the international system; the third analyses relations with four "regional" powers and potential rivals: Russia, China, the European Union and Japan. The last chapter assesses the methodology used and draws the conclusions.

The author's thesis is that the US economic strategy has helped and continues to facilitate economic globalisation, mitigating racial and cultural differences and reciprocal conflicts and creating a liberal-democratic consensus among states, albeit in the interest of US hegemony. The book is endowed with a large collection of tables and an ample bibliography.

The United States and Europe: policy imperative in a globalizing world / edited by Howard M. Hensel. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c2002. - xii, 257 p. - (Global interdisciplinary studes series). - ISBN 0-7546-3319-5
Resulting partly from the material presented at the annual Millennium Conference of the Comparative and Interdisciplinary Studies Section of the International Studies Association, this book is aimed at contextualising and analysing current relations between the United States and Europe.

It is made up of ten chapters: the first is an introduction to the context, principles, interests, objectives, continuity and changes in US foreign policy; the second and third deal with the enlargement of the EU and NATO, respectively; chapter four analyses the approach of the US and Russia to contemporary security; chapter five examines the constants and variables in UK defence and security policy; the sixth chapter is dedicated to the national and international sources of European security policy; the seventh to the role and effectiveness of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE); the eighth focuses on the liberalisation of world trade and the ninth on the fight against drugs. The tenth and final chapter provides the conclusions, summarising the questions raised in the preceding chapters and outlining the challenges and opportunities for US and European security in the twenty-first century, in the conviction that nothing is seriously threatening the relations between the two powers or diminishing the US' interest in Europe.

Middle East/Arab Countries

Arab development challenges of the new millennium / edited by Belkacem Laabas. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c2002. - x, 500 p. - ISBN 0-7546-1869-2
The proceedings of an international conference by the same name organised by the Arab Planning Institute in Kuwait in collaboration with the Mohammed V University of Rabat in June 2000.

The general subject is the challenges, the trends and the strategies for Arab countries in the new millennium. The book is broken down into five parts and a total of sixteen chapters. The first part is dedicated to the challenges of globalisation and, in particular, the social and economic implications - and relative countermeasures - for Arab countries, as well as the strategic regional alliances between Arab countries to manage globalisation and the use of new technologies. The second part focuses on the euro and the Euro-Med Partnership and their impact on Arab economies, the use of foreign currencies (above all euro, dollar and yen) in Arab countries and the potential for conflict between Arab regional integration and membership in the Euro-Med Partnership. The third part deals more specifically with Arab regional integration: regional aspects of development, the EU model and best practices taken from other international experiences. The fourth part is devoted to education, science and technology. In particular, it discusses the prospects for human development, the Arab educational system and the challenges posed to the Arab world by science and technology. The fifth and final part returns to human development, analysing the inter-country level variations and coordination with economic policies.

Diplomacy in the Middle East : the international relations of regional and outside powers / edited by L. Carl Brown. - London : I.B.Tauris, c2001 [reprint 2003]. - xx, 365 p. - (The library of international relations). - ISBN 186064-640-9
The result of a group research project, this book analyses the foreign policies of all Middle Eastern states (including Iran, Israel and Turkey) and four international powers with interests in the Middle East (Great Britain, France, Russia and the United States). The aim is to highlight the working guidelines behind each of them, but also to identify an underlying pattern in international relations in the region. The various case studies are grouped as follows: first the four major powers, then the countries involved in the Arab-Israeli conflict (Egypt, Israel, Jordan and Syria), then the three Arab countries of greatest interest to the authors (Iraq, Morocco and Saudi Arabia), the non-Arab countries not considered (Iran and Turkey) and, finally, all other Arab countries not considered. A concluding chapter draws a balance, arguing that there is a "distinctive balance-of-power system" and a "distinctive Middle Eastern diplomatic style". The book is wound up by a bibliographic essay with a vast selection of documentary sources.

Iraq's military capabilities in 2002 : a dynamic net assessment / Anthony H. Cordesman. - Washington : CSIS Press, September 2002. - viii, 100 p. - (CSIS Report). - ISBN 0-89206-416-1
While dated, this document, is still of topical interest, perhap even more interest in retrospect. The author, who has held various US government positions, attempts a pondered estimate of Iraq's capabilities in relation to certain political and military scenarios. It is interesting to note how he puts the accent on the need for a "clear nation-building plan" before entering into conflict. "The United States," he affirms, "cannot rely on 'spontaneous democracy' to solve its problems or a simplistic form of 'democratization'."

Redefining security in the Middle East / edited by Tami Amanda Jacoby and Brent E. Sasley. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c2002. - xii, 176 p. - (New approaches to conflict analysis). - ISBN 0-7190-6233-0
The book brings together the papers presented to an international conference held in Quebec in June 2000 on the impact of the peace process on the development of security agendas in the Middle East. The contributors are of different social, national, religious, ethnic and racial extraction and do not present a single approach to the subject. In fact, the aim was to promote dialogue on the meaning of security in the Middle East and to provide heuristic tools for shaping a new model to resolve the conflict. The various panels in which the conference was organised reflect the order of the chapters in the book: the first four chapters provide the conceptual and theoretical framework of Middle East security; the remaining four chapters focus on issues regarding gender, the environment, religion, political and social security. All contributors make an effort to use concepts of non-military security, alternative to the "orthodoxy" of security studies, and to broaden the definition of security in the Middle East.