You are an advisor to the EU’s enlargement commissioner. This paper is designed for you to take on the role of policy advisor to the EU’s Neighborhood and Enlargement Commissioner. You will be tasked to convince him that a certain country (you choose which one) in the Western Balkans should be immediately admitted to the EU or immediately removed from the accession process. You will look at the enlargement prospects for any country in the Western Balkans. Given what you have learned about enlargement in general since 2004 and the Bulgarian and Romanian cases, you are all well-prepared to do this. The paper runs 2000-2500 words with 8 – 12 sources split between academic and others. It combines research and policy paper. You are tasked with writing a research analysis and suggest a policy. In the case of Albania, Montenegro, North Macedonia or Serbia you can argue for either their immediate accession or that accession talks should be abandoned. In the case of Bosnia or Kosovo, you can argue that they should be made candidates for accession or left on “potential candidate” list. Things to consider: quality of democracy, regional relations, geopolitical concerns, rule of law and so on.
You are asked to write a 2000-2500-word (inclusive of notes but not bibliography) research analysis for the assignment.
This is NOT an op-ed!!! Do NOT write an OP-ED. It is closer to a policy paper/research paper as you have to back up your position with solid research from good media and academic sources.
Use 8 – 12 sources. A 50/50 mix is required between academic and others. All papers must include reference to the European Commission reports related to each country. These are easily accessible on the web.
This is both a big picture and small picture exercise as you need to demonstrate wider awareness of the issues facing the Western Balkans, the enlargement process and familiarity with the issues specific to your country of focus. You may be arguing for a single country, but you are free to include regional dynamics. How you approach the essay is otherwise up to you.
– Introduction and current context of chosen country
– Outline 3-5 main challenges of your chosen country (such as shortcomings in democracy, challenges with recognition from the EU, constitutional problems, issues with rule of law)
– Suggest policies at the end of the paper — should the country stick with the status quo or improve their status in the EU
– 2000-2500 words – notes included, not bibliography
1 – Do not overuse quotations. You are evaluated for your ability to understand and elaborate concepts that originate from the sources you use.
2 – Using as a source a news article where a scholar is interviewed and expresses a certain view can be a good media source to substantiate your view, but it is NOT an academic source. Theories on topics such as processes of integration, cooperation, nationalism, democracy, etc., are to be found in peer-reviewed academic journals and books.
4 – Avoid jargon and colloquial forms. Start with an introduction that provides the reader a roadmap of the contents of the essay as well as a specific anticipation of the argument you will be sustaining.