Multi-speed Europe and Political Polarization: Europe’s New and Old Challenge

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This essay is not an attempt at a comprehensive or academic analysis of Joschka Fischer’s landmark speech of 2000. One could analyze whether he rightly predicted the pitfalls awaiting the EU with regard to regulating free movement of workers in the enlarged Union or forging solidarity after the Eurozone crisis. Instead, this essay aims to reflect on two selected points that have changed significantly between 2000 and 2018. These two points are the conceptualization of a differentiated integration within the EU and the role of political ideology in the debate about EU’s goals. The question addressed when discussing these two issues is to what extent can the framework presented by Fischer in his speech be extended to include the newer developments, and to what extent do these newer developments put Fischer’s vision critically in question.


Joschka Fischer, Multi-speed Europe, EU’s differentiated integration


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