Business Briefs

European Responses to the Global Economic Crisis

The economic crisis that began in the summer of 2007 is having a powerful negative effect on popular attitudes toward European institutions specifically and toward European integration more generally. For the first time in its history, the European Central Bank (ECB) has fewer people who claim to trust it than distrust it. The balance of trust in the European Commission and the European Parliament is still positive, but only just. Meanwhile, and somewhat ironically, most Europeans express the belief that only international policy coordination can lead them out of the crisis and that levels of coordination are currently inadequate. The European Union (EU) may be unpopular, but it is no less necessary as a result.

The purpose of this brief is to map the politics behind European responses to the global economic crisis. The brief is structured in four parts. The first provides an overview of the public opinion polling data. The second sketches how EU institutions actually help. The third shows where the coordination of national policies breaks down. The fourth explains why the United States and the rest of the world will suffer unless the situation improves.

  • Popular Commitment to Coordination
  • Policy Coordination Inside and Outside the Euro
  • Problems with Coordination
  • Implications


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