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Transdisciplinary Discourses on Cross-Border Cooperation in Europe

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Edited By Joachim Beck

In the context of European integration, cross-border cooperation has become increasingly important. Following both the quantitative and qualitative expansion of this policy-field, it has repeatedly been the subject of scientific analysis in the past. However, as a result of the classical differentiation of the scientific system, it was mostly viewed from a monodisciplinary perspective. This publication aims at the foundation of a trans-disciplinary research approach in the field of European cross-border cooperation. It takes the multi-dimensional reality of practical territorial cooperation in Europe as a starting point and develops a transdisciplinary scientific approach. Based on a common analytic frame of reference, practical patterns of cross-border policy-making in different European border regions are analyzed from the integrated theoretical perspectives of various scientific disciplines: Political Science, Geography, Sociology, History, Law, Cultural Sciences and Socio-Linguistics, Economics and Administrative Science. The scientific conceptualizations are expanded by reports from practitioners coming from different institutional and functional levels of European cross-border policy-making.

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Cross-border cooperation in the field of EU Energy Policy. Legal tools for an effective transnational space of access to energy (Frédérique Berrod / Louis Navé)

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Cross-border cooperation in the field of EU Energy Policy

Legal tools for an effective transnational space of access to energy

Frédérique BERROD, Louis NAVÉ

It is a paradox to consider that the EU developed a very substantial set of rules and legal principles to allow for free movement of goods, services, capitals and persons and neglected to concentrate its legal action on cross-border cooperation. Article 197 TFEU gave the EU the task to develop cross-border cooperation as a means to implement EU acts. The formulation is very cautious to respect the institutional and procedural autonomy of member states, acting as executive power of the EU.1 That is why “the Union may support the efforts of Member States to improve their administrative capacity to implement Union law. Such action may include facilitating the exchange of information and of civil servants as well as supporting training schemes”.2

The EU has more efficiently invested in such cooperation via INTERREG to boost an inclusive cooperation between the 40 existing borders in the EU and the EFTA countries. As the Commission stated in its communication issued in September 2017: “Border regions are places where the European integration process should be felt most positively ‒ studying, training, working, caring and doing business across borders are all daily activities that should be possible regardless of the existence of an administrative national border. […] Measures that go beyond European funding are needed as these ongoing...

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