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


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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Trans-Jura Conference


The Trans-Jura Conference (Conférence transjurassienne) aims to foster cross-border collaboration in the Jura region (Arc jurassien). This French-speaking region covers a range of medium-altitude mountains and is crossed by a 230 km border between France and Switzerland. In its institutional definition, the Jura region gathers four Swiss cantons (Jura, Neuchâtel, Vaud, northern part of Bern) and four French departments of the Bourgogne Franche-Comté region (Doubs, Jura, Territoire de Belfort, Haute-Saône). It holds a population of 2.4 million individuals. Haute-Saône was removed from this perimeter with the French territorial reform of 2016. The topographic definition of the Jura region is narrower with only 640 000 inhabitants.

The main urban Centres are located in low land areas outside the core of the region (e.g. Besançon, Belfort, Lausanne, Neuchâtel). The region is, thus, mainly rural with some small- and medium-sized cities such as La Chaux-de-Fonds (38 000 inhabitants) and Pontarlier (19 000). The density and demographic growth are globally higher on the Swiss side. A focus on the border shows, however, a higher growth but of low density in French municipalities that attract cross-border commuters. Economically, the Swiss Jura is more dynamic. The region has retained its industrial specialization (about a fourth of the labour force). It exports products worldwide and is highly praised for its watch-making industry, micro technologies and machinery sector (e.g. Swiss-made label).

The border was delineated in 1815 by the Congress of Vienna and has...

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