During the last two decades the study of European foreign policy has experienced remarkable growth, presumably reflecting a more significant international role of the European Union. The Union has significantly expanded its policy portfolio and though empty symbolic politics still exists, the Union’s international relations have become more substantial and its foreign policy more focused. European foreign policy has become a dynamic policy area, being adapted to changing challenges and environments, such as the Arab Spring, new emerging economies/powers; the crisis of multilateralism and much more. The SAGE Handbook of European Foreign Policy, Two-Volume set, is a major reference work for Foreign Policy Programmes around the world. The Handbook is designed to be accessible to graduate and postgraduate students in a wide variety of disciplines across the humanities and social sciences. Both volumes are structured to address areas of critical concern to scholars at the cutting edge of all major dimensions of foreign policy. The volumes are composed of original chapters written specifically to the following themes: • Research traditions and historical experience • Theoretical perspectives• EU actors• State actors• Societal actors• The politics of European foreign policy• Bilateral relations• Relations with multilateral institutions• Individual policies• Transnational challenges The Handbook will be an essential reference for both advanced students and scholars.

Public Opinion and European Foreign Policy

Public Opinion and European Foreign Policy

Public opinion and European Foreign Policy
Pierangelo Isernia Francesco Olmastroni


In 1998 Dalton and Eichenberg claimed that public opinion had ‘real’ and ‘profound’ influence on the process of European integration (Dalton and Eichenberg 1998: 252). This claim is no less, if not more, valid nowadays than it was 15 years ago, and this is also true in foreign policy, an issue area usually perceived as shielded by the influence of domestic factors. Ojanen (2006: 62–3), for example, points to public opinion as a primary factor in the remodelling of EU security and defence in the late 1990s. At the other end of the policymaking process, Howorth (2001: 783–4) sees the ‘selling’ ...

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