1st Edition

EU, Security and The Eastern Partnership Resilient States versus Resilient Societies

Edited By Christian Kaunert, Giselle Bosse, Alena Vieira Copyright 2025
    214 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book connects the scholarly discussions on 'security' and 'resilience', by examining the various definitions and meanings of the terms in the EU's Eastern Partnership (EaP) policy, and in what ways the EU has attempted to define the relationship between security and resilience in its official rhetoric and in policy practice.

    The Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 has largely been viewed as an extraordinary resilience test for the EU. The war has unleashed multiple crises ranging from security and asylum to energy and the economy, in turn raising questions not only on how the EU can ensure the resilience of its eastern partners, but also questions existential to the EU, such as institutional and policy reform, further EU enlargement and the EU's role in a rapidly changing global context of polarisation and fragmentation. The chapters in this edited volume draw on a diversity of original conceptual and theoretical frameworks that are combined with an empirical analysis of often overlooked dimensions of EU’s policy towards the EaP countries, drawing on the original data collected by the authors, including the semi-structured interviews. In light of the aforementioned challenges, the chapters to this book have only increased in relevance, pointing to pathways and opportunities for the EU to strengthen the resilience of its eastern partners and its own resilience in the future, and inviting policy-makers and scholars to reflect on potential pitfalls, contradictions and limitations of EU resilience-building.

    This book will be beneficial to students, scholars and academics interested in European Studies, Politics and International Security. The chapters in this book were originally published in the Journal of Contemporary European Studies.

    Introduction: Resilient states versus resilient societies? Whose security does the EU protect through the Eastern Partnership in times of geopolitical crises?

    Christian Kaunert, Giselle Bosse and Alena Vieira


    1. Resilient states vs. resilient societies? The ‘dark side’ of resilience narratives in EU relations with authoritarian regimes: A case study of Belarus

    Giselle Bosse and Alena Vieira

    2. A new business as usual? The impact of the ‘resilience turn’ on the EU’s foreign policy and approach towards the eastern neighbourhood

    Cristian Nitoiu and Loredana Simionov


    3. Resilience in EU crisis interventions in Ukraine: A complexity perspective

    Michal Natorski


    4. Going back and forth: European Union resilience-building in Moldova between 2014 and 2020

    Mihai-Razvan Corman and Tobias Schumacher


    5. Connectivity of the EU’s Eastern Partnership region: Contestation between liberal and illiberal approaches

    Kristi Raik


    6. EU Eastern Partnership, Ontological Security and EU- Ukraine/Russian warfare

    Christian Kaunert and Joana de Deus Pereira


    7. China’s discourse on the belt and road initiative: A hidden threat to European security logic?

    Stefanie Weil


    8. Do the EU and Ukraine speak the same language? The various notions of resilience before the military intervention

    Kateřina Kočí, Marianna Gladysh and Oksana Krayevska


    9. Alliance-building between great power commitment and misperceptions: Failed balancing despite alignment efforts in the post-Soviet space

    Kavus Abushov


    10. A divorce of convenience: exploring radical right populist parties’ position on Putin’s Russia within the context of the Ukrainian war. A social media perspective

    Benedetta Carlotti


    11. Depoliticising the people: Post-normative power Europe in the women-led protests in Belarus

    Emily Loucas



    Christian Kaunert, Giselle Bosse and Alena Vieira



    Christian Kaunert is Professor of International Security at Dublin City University, Ireland. He is also Professor of Policing and Security, as well as Director of the International Centre for Policing and Security at the University of South Wales. In addition, he is Jean Monnet Chair, Director of the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence and Director of the Jean Monnet Network on EU Counter-Terrorism (www.eucter.net).

    Giselle Bosse is Associate Professor in EU External Relations and Director of the Research Master European Studies at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Maastricht University. She is co-director of the Centre for European Research in Maastricht (CERiM) (from September 2019) and founder and coordinator of the Research Colloquium on ‘The Politics and Governance of Administrative Reform in Central and Eastern Europe’.

    Alena Vieira is Assistant Professor at CICP/University of Minho, Portugal. She holds PhD in Political Science from the University Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany. She was Visiting Researcher da Finnish Institute of International Affairs, Instituto Estudos Estratégicos e Internacionais (Lisbon), e Universidade Católica de Leuven.