In to the rise of Euroscepticism in many European


In his speech about the
state of the European Union on the 13th of September 2007, President
of the European Commision Jean-Claude Juncker declares that ”the wind is back
in Europe’s sails. But we will go nowhere unless we catch that wind” (
The wind blowing through the European Union in the last decade has been a thorough
headwind, from the European debt crisis starting at the end of 2009 to Brexit
in 2016 and the growing sense of Euroscepticism among European politicians and citizens.                                                       The
European integration began after World War II with six Western European
countries and has evolved into the current European Union with 28 member
states, including most of the formerly communist countries of Central and
Eastern Europe. A unique partnership in which European countries have merged
sovereignty in certain policy areas and integrated laws on a wide range of
economic, social and political issues, the European Union member states share a
customs union, a single market with free movement of goods, people, capital and
services, a common agricultural policy, a common trade policy and a common
currency (the Euro) used by 19 member states. In addition, the Schengen area of
free movement, consisting of 22 member states, establishes the possibility to
travel without passport checks. While the European Union has always been a point
of critique for several European politicians, the European was largely seen as
a success story and as creator of European prosperity and stability. However,
the 2009 European debt crisis caused more profound criticism on the European
project, leading to the rise of Euroscepticism in many European member states. The
undoubted low point of Euroscepticism came in 2016 when the 52% of the Brits
voted in favor to withdraw from the European Union, starting the ongoing Brexit
negotiations. The thorough headwind continues to blow through the European
Union with several Eurosceptic political parties winning votes in tense
national elections.                                                                                                Although the danger threatening the
European Union has not evaporated, the European Union now seems to be at an
intersection, a transition. Which direction is the European Union going to?
What scenarios exist for the European Union? And which scenario is the most
realistic? This essay is divided in six parts. The first five parts will each
give a different scenario for the near future of the European Union. In the
conclusion, the following research question will be answered: What is
the most likely scenario to be pursued by the European Union as a response to
the 2009 Eurozone Crisis, Brexit and the rise of Euroscepticism?