Gaps Between Comprehensive Approaches of the EU and EU Member States
- In promoting the 'Comprehensive Approach' - there is pressure to adopt a maximalist approach to coherence (involving as many actors as possible), yet this is likely to result in unrealistic expectations. There is a need to accept that there are various levels of coherence, and that needs should be balanced with what’s feasible in every context.
- Several EU member states have made advances in developing their own comprehensive approaches, yet their approaches vary in scope, level of institutional formalisation and in their policies and memberships. The variations in approaches are considerable, and they are not sufficiently linked to the approach at the wider European level.
- The extent to which comprehensive approaches are operationalised within the respective countries, and the forms such operationalisations take, are strongly determined by countries’ overall foreign policy, their “strategic cultures” for international engagement and their willingness to mobilise their military for interventions in situations of crisis and conflict – be it under NATO, the UN or CSDP missions.
This report builds on earlier ECDPM work in the domain of conflict prevention and post-crisis transition, as well as on complementary research and peer discussions. It was presented at a workshop on the Comprehensive Approach, organised by the Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law in The Hague on 12th December, 2014.Photo courtesy of European External Action Service