How European Integration Has Continued, Despite the EU’s Limited Locking-in Capacity

  • Hans Vollaard
Part of the Palgrave Studies in European Union Politics book series (PSEUP)


The refusal of the UK’s entry in the 1960s kept the EC’s external consolidation at bay, allowing for its ongoing internal construction. The integrative spiral continued, as most actors (with the exception of some companies) had no better alternatives. Key coalitions between France and Germany and also those in the European Parliament were able to gain strength. However, (the prospect of) enlargement unsettled existing coalitions, budgetary exchanges, vote distribution in European institutions, and loyalty among citizens. As a result, internal construction remained restricted with limited means of fostering loyalty, controlling boundaries, and checking compliance, and limited development of voice infrastructure and institutional power. Thus, the persistently weak external consolidation of the EU has constrained its internal construction (Proposition 2), and its relative attractiveness explains its continued existence better than its locking-in capacity does.


De Gaulle Enlargements Germany EU loyalty EU’s locking-in capacity 


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Vollaard
    • 1
  1. 1.Utrecht UniversityUtrechtThe Netherlands

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