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University of Wroclaw

Institute of Sociology

You are here: Home > Institute > Research projects > Poland and Germany in the European Union - new forms and models of bilateral relations in foreign policy and the cross-border cooperation

The project “ Poland and Germany in the European Union - new forms and models of bilateral relations in foreign policy and the cross-border cooperation ”, financially supported by the German-Polish Science Foundation in Frankfurt (Oder), 

Research team: dr hab. Elżbieta Opiłowska (Project leader from the University of Wrocław), dr Monika Sus (Project leader from the Hertie School of Governance, Berlin).

Funding period: 1 September 2017 - 30 June 2020, funding amount: 90 000 euro, of which 29789 euro for the University of Wrocław

The project, that we carry out in cooperation with the Center for Interdisciplinary Polish Studies (ZIP) at the European University Viadrina, explores the dynamics of the bilateral relationship between Germany and Poland in the context of the membership of the two countries in the European Union and examines the interdependencies between these three actors (Germany, Poland and the EU) through two case studies – foreign&security policy and cross-border cooperation. The point of departure for the project is the recognition that there is a need for the development of a renewed research framework that would grasp the complexity of bilateral relations between two Member States taking into account the influence of the EU. The projects focuses on Poland and Germany and refers to categories that have been used in the analysis of German-Polish relations (community of values and interests, asymmetry in the bilateral relationship, Germany's role as a lawyer in Poland's accession to the EU, partnership and experienced neighborhood). Yet, the research framework that the project aims to contribute to, should be transferable and could later be useful for studying bilateral relations between other countries. 

The study thus contributes to a better understanding of today's conditions and challenges of European integration. Since the EU has been in a constant state of crisis since 2007 and the role of nation states is constantly being questioned, a profound analysis of the ways of cooperation and their impact on the supranational level seems to be necessary.

The project takes into consideration the latest developments in German-Polish cooperation and focuses on the following research questions:

- How have the bilateral relations between Germany and Poland since 2004 been involved in foreign policy and cross-border cooperation?

- To what extent are the relations influenced by membership of the European Union?

- How do the two states and the regional actors, individually and / or as partners, determine the dynamics on the European level?

-  What were and are the models of cooperation, the ways of cooperation and the factors at the local / regional, state and European level that support or even prevent potential cooperation?