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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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Czech Republic


The Czech Republic is a Central European state which acceded during the first enlargement of the European Union (EU) to the east in 2004. It has an area of 78 870 km2, shares land borders with Germany (646 km), Poland (658 km), Austria (466 km) and Slovakia (252 km) and it is crossed by two large rivers, the Elbe and the Vltava. The Republic was formed in 1993, as a consequence of the partition of Czechoslovakia, resulting in the creation of two new states, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The Czech State was formed in the 10th century and in the 14th century, the Kingdom of Bohemia became part of the Holy Roman Empire. It ←288 | 289→then experienced a long period of Austrian domination. Following the Spring of Nations in 1848, a Czech resistance movement started to take shape within the Austrian Empire. After the establishment of the Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary in 1861, Emperor Franz Josef I granted the Czechs quasi-equality within a largely decentralized imperial system. The history of the Czech Republic became interconnected with that of Slovakia after World War I. Czechoslovakia was formed in 1918 under President Wilson’s 14-point program, bringing together the Czechs, Slovaks and Ruthenes from the old Austro-Hungarian Empire. The newly independent state also included a large German and a Hungarian minority. The borders of Czechoslovakia were defined in succession under the 1919 Peace Treaties, but were contested in the interwar period, especially by Nazi regime...

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