The Future of the Small State in European Integration


A study with special consideration of the Principality of Liechtenstein


Within the European Union a development towards an increasingly political union, not only of the member states but also of the citizens, can be observed, which at the same time includes more and more European states. In addition to the associated changes for the member states themselves, this dynamic of the European integration process also has a particular influence on those European states that are outside the Union. The closer and in more areas the states cooperate within the Union, the more difficult it becomes for third countries to maintain their isolated position without suffering any economic, political or social disadvantages.


The present study deals with the question of the future positioning of the small European states of Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco and San Marino, which are all located centrally in Europe but are not EU members. In particular, the challenges for the enlargement and third country policy of the European Union, which may arise due to the demographic smallness of the countries studied, are addressed. Specifically, the study considers both an expanded form of association agreements and the option of EU membership for small states. Based on an understanding of the European Union as a non-state, federal system that is outside the dichotomy of confederation and federal state, what at first glance appear to be purely political issues are made accessible to a legal solution.


Project duration: 2007 to 2010