Overcoming the Crisis of EU Enlargement in the Western Balkans

Deadline: 20 July 2012
Open to: young researchers
Venue: 9-11 November, University of Graz


The Centre for Southeast European Studies, University of Graz in cooperation with the European Fund for the Balkans, Österreichische Gesellschaft für Europapolitik, Südosteuropa Gesellschaft and Europe Direct Steiermark will host a three day conference on the state of EU enlargement in Graz on the 9-11th November 2012. The goal of the conference is to reflect whether EU enlargement in the Western Balkans is in crisis and will include policy-led discussions on reinvigorating the EU enlargement process and academic panels on specific obstacles in the enlargement process. An edited collection of the best papers presented at the conference is planned for 2013.
This conference will discuss the obstacles and approaches to accelerate and reinvigorate the enlargement process. Instead of viewing enlargement as a state fullfilling formal criteria, the conference will focus on how and if the enlargement process can overcome “enlargement fatigue” and skepticism towards membership of the Western Balkans in the EU to key aspects that the enlargement process both hopes to overcome and which risk remaining an obstacle for EU membership. As an interdisciplinary event, the conference will include policy makers, lawyers, political scientists, sociologists and scholars from other disciplines.


The conference in particular seeks to give room to young researchers who are able to contribute rich empirical work to the discussion.


The conference will be held in Graz, between 9-11 November, 2012. The working language of the conference is English.


The organizers invite paper proposal for the conference. Researchers interested in participating are asked to submit a 400 word abstract and CV by 20 July 2012 to the following email address:  florian.bieber@uni-graz.at. Applicants are particularly encouraged to apply with papers on the following thematic areas:

• Enlargement Fatigue in the EU? Causes and how to build support for Enlargement.
• Making EU Enlargement Work–How to reinvigorate the accession process?
• EU Conditionality Before Membership: Membership Conditionality vs. Policy Conditionality
• How to Break the Deadlock of Bilateral Disputes in the Western Balkans
• Regatta or Big Bang Model of Accession?
• Closing Difficult Chapters: Rule of Law and Judiciary Regional Cooperation in the WB
• Global Economic Crisis and its Influence on the EU Enlargement

The authors of accepted proposals will be invited to submit draft version of their papers of 6,000 to 9,000 words for circulation among participants prior to the conference by October 20th 2012. The organizers of the conference will cover accommodation and board as well as transport to and from Graz for invited participants, conditional on the submission of the draft paper by the deadline.

The Official Website

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