This book provides an original, rigorous and theoretically-grounded investigation into varying EU efforts to advance intercultural dialogue (ICD) in the framework of its foreign policy towards the Mediterranean during the period 1990-2014. From the end of the Cold War, the EU has increasingly invested in both rhetoric and resources on ICD promotion. In spite of this commitment, the EU has never offered a clear and permanent understanding of what this concept entails and has been actually aimed at. By adopting a FPA standpoint and approaching ICD as one of the foreign policy instruments developed by the EU to address the relations with its Mediterranean partners, this book exposes the causes and the modalities of the contradictory development of this relevant and long standing element of EU foreign policy.
De Perini investigates change and continuity in the promotion of this tool, and provides in-depth knowledge of what ICD has actually meant for the EU: from the development and launch of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership or Barcelona Process, to the revision of the European Neighbourhood Policy following the Arab uprisings. The book shows that the EU’s advancement of ICD in its foreign policy has gone through three distinct phases: ‘emergence’ (1990-2001), ‘consolidation’ (2001-2010) and ‘professionalisation’ (2010-2014). Empirically the book provides the first comprehensive and integrative analysis of all aspects of EU efforts to promote ICD.
The book exposes a series of trends, limits and contradictions of EU foreign policy which are increasingly relevant today. In particular, it shows that over the last twenty-five years, the EU has addressed a set of persistent challenges characterising its relations with Mediterranean countries and people, namely challenges connected to regional conflicts, religious fundamentalisms, xenophobic attitudes towards Arab/Muslim migrants and related social tensions. As these challenges are still major issues in the current EU agenda and in the broader debate about EU foreign policy, this book provides rich and original empirical knowledge to an understanding of how the EU has decided to address these phenomena at different moments of its recent history.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Approaching European Union foreign policy
Chapter 2. The Evolution of EU Policies in a Changing Mediterranean Context
Chapter 3. The Emergence of Intercultural Dialogue
Chapter 4. The Consolidation of Intercultural Dialogue
Chapter 5. The Professionalisation of intercultural dialogue
Pietro de Perini is a Research Fellow at the Human Rights Centre in the University of Padova, Italy. He is among the editors of the Italian Yearbook of Human Rights.