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Critical Dictionary on Borders, Cross-Border Cooperation and European Integration

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Edited By Birte Wassenberg and Bernard Reitel

This Critical Dictionary on Borders, Cross-Border Cooperation and European Integration is the first encyclopaedia which combines two so far not well interconnected interdisciplinary research fields, i.e. Border Studies and European Studies. Organised in an alphabetical order, it contains 207 articles written by 115 authors from different countries and scientific disciplines which are accompanied by 58 maps. The articles deal with theory, terminology, concepts, actors, themes and spaces of neighbourhood relations at European borders and in borderlands of and around the European Union (EU). Taking into account a multi-scale perspective from the local to the global, the Critical Dictionary follows a combined historical-geographical approach and is co-directed by Birte Wassenberg and Bernard Reitel, with a large contribution of Jean Peyrony and Jean Rubio from the Mission opérationnelle transfrontalère (MOT), especially for the cartography. The Dictionary is also part of four Jean Monnet activities supported by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union for the period 2016-2022: two Jean Monnet projects on EU border regions (University Strasbourg), one Jean Monnet network (Frontem) and the Franco-German Jean Monnet excellence Center in Strasbourg, as well as the Jean Monnet Chair of Bernard Reitel on borders and European integration. Rather than being designed as an objective compilation of facts and figures, it should serve as a critical tool for discussion between researchers, students and practitioners working in the field of borders, cross-border cooperation and European Integration.

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Euroregion Pomoraví/Weinviertel/Záhorie

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The trilateral Czech-Austrian-Slovak territory was part of Habsburg monarchy until 1918, after 1945 its both main parts – Czechoslovak and Austria – were on the different sides of the Iron Curtain. The border was controlled by the military which made cross-border contacts complicated and severely limited development for the both parts of the border region. The trilateral Euroregional cooperation on the Czech-Austrian-Slovak border began later than cooperation on the rest of the Czech and Austrian borders. The Euroregion itself was founded in 1999, which was later than Euroregions on Czech-German borders. This can be attributed to generally colder Czech-Austrian relations in the 1990s and the fact that Austria joined the EU only in 1995. Another reason for relative later establishment of the Euroregion can be seen in the negative attitude of semi-authoritarian Slovak Mečiar´s government towards Euroregional co-operation (1992 – 1998 with a short break in 1994).

The main feature of the region is the Morava River, creating Czech-Slovak and later on Slovak-Austrian borders. Three languages are spoken Czech, Slovak, and German. The language similarities and joint history undamaged by the ‘velvet divorce’ of Czechoslovakia support Czech and Slovak cooperation. The region is full of economic disparities, with wealthier Austrian and poorer Czech and Slovak parts, hence the significant cross-border commuting of the Czech and Slovak labour force to Austria.

The entire territory of the Euroregion is 11 525 km2. There are around 1 152 000 inhabitants living in 224 municipalities of the Euroregion, 735...

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