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The impact of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on public support for EU enlargement

  • Panchuk, Dmytro
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2024
Ghent University Institutional Archive
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The full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 has become one of the greatest security crises since World War 2, with profound geopolitical and socio-economic implications for Europe and beyond. The upsurge of political and media attention to this war may have increased public support for EU enlargement, with new countries in the Eastern neighbourhood and the Western Balkans receiving the official EU candidate status. By drawing on mechanisms of securitisation and solidarity, this paper tests to what extent the Russian invasion has generated a positive politicisation of EU enlargement. While this crisis may have indeed fostered a permissive consensus in EU public opinion regarding Ukraine’s future accession, I observe no such effects for the Western Balkans or Turkey. This finding also remains robust to identity and socioeconomic controls, which have traditionally structured public support for European integration. The empirical part is based on descriptive and regression analyses of data from a representative survey of 7678 respondents in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Spain conducted at the end of 2022.

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