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European Foreign, Security and Defence Policy


Admission requirements

Admission to the Master International Relations, track European Union Studies


The course aims at defining the scope and limitations of the CFSP and CSDP in the double context of continuing European integration and changing transatlantic relations. What are European interests, what threats do they face and will the EU become a global player in these domains? The course will trace historical deveopments from Western European Union, European Political Cooperation, the pillar structure of the Treaty of Maastricht to the European Convention, the relationship with NATO and current efforts at a more integrated approach under the Treaty of Lisbon. Case studies of European missions will made in conjunction with student papers. At the conceptual level the course will discuss the ambiguous character of the ‘communitarian’ integration wit its institutions and majority voting, and intergovernmental cooperation based on consensus, as well as the new solidarity clauses and attempts to introduce some flexibilty by new modalities like ‘constructive abstention’,’closer cooperation’ and “permanent structured cooperation’. In the defence field the European Defence Agency plays a role in combining military requirements, research and technology, procurement and evaluation and the current focus on ‘pooling and sharing’. Another subject is the role of international parliamentary assemblies. The 2014 course will pay particular attention to the special European Council session on defence held in December 2013.

Course objectives

Students will acquire insight into the modalities of integration and cooperation which are likely to remain dominant characteristics of the EU in the years to come. They will become familiar with the instruments and practice under the Lisbon Treaty, the relations with other international organisations, the buildup of military capabilities, the legitimacy of hard power and soft power, the difference between collective defence and peace support operations, and the connection between security and development.


See the website.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

Presentation and participation (30%) and essay (70%)


Yes, see the site.

Reading list


  • Steven Blockmans (ed.) The European Union and Crisis management. Policy and legal aspects. Asser Press, 2008

  • Fraser Cameron, An introduction to European Foreign Policy. Routledge, 2007

  • C. Hill and M.Smith, International Relations and the European Union, Oxford, 2005, Chapter 9

  • Willem van Eekelen, Debating European Security, Sdu/CEPS, 1998

  • Willem van Eekelen, From Words to Deeds, The Continuing Debate on European Security, CEPS/DCAF 2006

  • General Sir Rupert Smith, The utility of force. The art of war in the modern world. Allen Lane, 2007

Selected Articles

  • B. Crum, Parliamentarization of the CFSP through informal institution-making? The fifth European Parliament and the EU High Representative. Journal of European public policy, 2006

  • B. Giegerich and E. Gros, Squaring the Circle. Leadership and Legitimacy in European Security and Defence Cooperation International Politics, 43, 4 (2006) 500-509.

  • A. Hyde-Price, Normative’power Europe: a realist critique. Journal of European Public Policy, 13, 2 (2006) 217-234.

  • E.J. Kirchner, The Challenge of European Union Security Governance Journal of Common Market Studies 44, 5 (2006) 947–968.

  • A. Missiroli, EU Enlargement and the CFSP/ESDP Journal of European Integration, 25, 1, (2003) 1-16.

  • H. Ojanen, The EU and NATO: Two Competing Models for a Common Defence Policy Journal of Common Market Studies, 44, 1 (2006) 57–76.

  • T. Salmon, The European Union: Just an alliance or a military alliance, Journal of Strategic Studies, 29, 5 (2006) 813


Via uSis

Contact information

The Co-ordinator of Studies