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Alexandru Balas. Muslims in Europe. The European Union Solving Social Conflicts. Editura Lumen, 2008.

Abstract: European Unionís conflict transformation approaches are best known in the framework of the Europeanization process of Central and Eastern Europe. Little is known about the European Unionís 3rd party structural transformation intervention into the social conflicts taking place inside the European Union.

Many Member-States of the European Union experienced over the last decade an increase in the social conflict involving Muslim communities. The E.U.ís bodies and institutions are the most suited to address such an European-wide conflict.

As a 3rd party, the European Union uses a structural transformation approach to address this conflict, through legislation and policies aimed at changing the structures of the Member-States. However, the 3rd party intervention of the European Union depends on the capacity of the Member Stateís political structures to adopt the requested legislation and policies which address the conflict.

The research question is: Do political opportunity structures impact the process of 3rd party intervention in the context of the European Union? Political opportunity structures is operationalized as institutional arrangements (centralized vs. decentralized) which allow for an easier or more difficult filtration of 3rd party intervention mechanisms coming from above the state level. Political culture is also taken into account in relationship to the institutional arrangements. The process of 3rd party intervention has two phases: transposition and implementation.

The research methods used were comparative case studies (France and Spain) and secondary data analysis. The conclusion is that political structures impact the process of 3rd party intervention in an insignificant way and are not influential on the levels of conflict.

Keywords: Muslims, conflicts, Europe, European Union


Posted by Alexandru Balas


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