This course is part of the integrated program Tübingen-Berlin International Summer School.
The process of European Integration has arguably been most successful in the economic domain. Already in 1958, the European Union’s (EU) six founding member states created a custom union that abolished tariffs between them and established a common external tariff that ever since governs exchanges with the rest of the world. Through subsequent integration steps, the EU moved ever closer to its goal of building a fully integrated internal market offering free movement of goods, service, labour and capital. Gradually, the appeal of an economically integrated Europe widened the EU to 28 member states. Today, 19 member states even form a monetary union since they adopted a common currency, the Euro. As a result, the EU is unquestionably the world’s most advanced project of regional economic integration.
This course will introduce students to the political and historical background of the economic integration process in the European Union, as well as to basic theoretical concepts that help to understand the economic rationales behind this development. In addition to the class sessions, the course program foresees two field trips to relevant political and economic institutions in Berlin.
Upon completion of this course, students are familiar with the historical and institutional developments regarding the economic integration in the European Union as well as with the main features of the EU’s internal market. Furthermore, students are enabled to understand and critically discuss the economic issues and current problems in the EU’s main economic policy areas such as competition policy and state aid, the European Monetary Union (EMU), the EU’s Budget, EU external trade policy, the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) as well as EU Cohesion and Social Policy. The course will also take up current debates on the causes of the euro crisis and Brexit and their consequences for the present and future of the European integration project.
The course is open to students from various academic disciplines with a general interest in the history, politics and economy of Europe and the European Union.
There is no special knowledge about European politics or economics required but students should be interested in Europe and the European Union in general. A very good command of English is highly necessary.
Students are expected to attend each class, to read the literature assigned for each class, and to participate in class discussions and field trips.
A course reader will be provided.