Conference with Sophie Duchesne [fr]
As part of the 9th Biennial Congress of the European Community Studies Association, entitled “Europe in an Age of Austerity: Integration, Disintegration, or Stagnation?”, Sophie Duchesne, Research Director at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and member of the Institut des sciences sociales du politique at the Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, will take part in three events on Thursday, April 26 (lecture) and Friday, April 27 (round table) at the Ottawa Public Library, and on Saturday, April 28 at the Lord Elgin Hotel (round table, paid registration for the day).
5:30 – 7 p.m.
«Indifference, Scepticism and Identity: (non) approaches of Citizens to Europe after six decades of Integration »
Friday, April 27
3 – 4:30 p.m.
« Europe in the Age of Austerity »
Participants: Sophie Duchesne (Université Paris Ouest Nanterre), Patrick Leblond (Université d’Ottawa), Kurt Hübner (University of British Columbia), Vivien Schmidt (Boston University), David Howarth (University of Edinburgh)
Ottawa Public Library
120 Metcalfe Street
RSVP before April 20 firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, April 28
2:15 – 3:45 p.m.
« Approach of the Public and the Elites to European Immigration »
Paid admission (full day)
For further information: email@example.com
Lord Elgin Hotel - 100 Elgin St. - Laurier Room
For the full schedule of these events: http://web.uvic.ca/ecsac/biennial2012/program.html
Sophie Duchesne Duchesne is Research Director at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and a member of the Institut des sciences sociales du politique at the Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense. In recent years, she has coordinated the CITAE project (Citizens Talking About Europe), a comparative and qualitative project between Sciences Po Paris, Oxford University and the Université catholique de Louvain, looking at attitudes relating to European integration.
The final research findings, Overlooking Europe, will be published by Palgrave in late 2012. Sophie Duchesne’s research interests include political citizenship and identities in France, the United Kingdom and in Europe, as well as qualitative research practices in the social sciences. She is leading the creation of a qualitative research bank in France. She heads the Scientific Council at the CNRS’s Institut des sciences humaines et sociales.
“Indifference, Scepticism and Identity: (non) approaches of Citizens to Europe after six decades of Integration”
Thursday, April 26 at 5:30 p.m. at the Ottawa Public Library
The idea that identity and emotions play an increasingly important role in public opinion of the EU is more and more widespread in European studies. It is now believed that the elitist tradition that has defined the integration process from the start has transformed into a “Euro-clash” (Fligstein) in which unequal benefits obtained from European policies by the masses and the elite are coupled with identity conflicts, where the elites feel increasingly European while the working classes still identity exclusively with their nation. This hypothesis, and more generally the theory pointing to the politicisation of European issues argued by many studies, rests largely on the analysis of European poll data, the Eurobarometers. But during the last decade, there have been a greater number of qualitative works done in European studies and their results paint an entirely different picture.
First, they call into question the possibility of dealing with citizen attitudes with regard to the EU without distinguishing between countries and social groups. They also show, in a very cumulative way, that Euroscepticism, together with identification with Europe, are fringe attitudes if compared to citizen indifference towards the EU. This indifference is difficult to understand for researchers working on the European Union and who measure the impact of decisions made at the European level on the lives of Europeans, both current and future. The time has come for sociologists studying integration to take this phenomenon fully into consideration.
Globalisation and the feeling of being completely dominated by political and economic elites help deprive citizens of any notion that they have influence over their own lives and thereby deprive the European project of all significance.