In reflective moments, EU officials complain wistfully that they can't abolish free movement or the single currency, or indeed rewind history sixty years for an afternoon: they'd like to remind us just what life was like without the European Union. Well, that's one way of making the case for Europe. But surely European cooperation has intrinsic qualities beyond big-bang creations like the Euro. If not, then it's unclear what use it will be in overcoming the everyday challenges facing its 27 members.
"What the European Union Did Next" addresses this issue, and it finds reason to be cheerful. Each of the essays collected here identifies one undervalued quality of the EU's modus operandi and shows how that quality could revitalise the Union. By reference to a whole range of policy areas, from foreign policy to social exclusion to constitutional policy, the eleven contributions make the case for the EU's strengths - and its limitations.