[EGC] Norms and rules. Causes and effects of socio-demographic, economic and political dynamics inside and outside Europe

From a dynamic perspective, rules and norms can be seen under a double prospect. On the one hand, regulation (in a broad sense, as rules and norms, both formal and informal) arises and evolves because of complex socio-demographic, political and economic dynamics. On the other hand, regulation (as a form of socio-political response) can shape the context itself by affecting the same dynamics that contributed to its determination. The demand and supply for regulation, therefore, can be considered as both an effect and a cause of socio-demographic, economic and political changes. Disentangling this complex interaction between demand and supply of regulation and the aforementioned dynamics might be helpful to better understand current and historical political and economic trends within and outside Europe.

This approach is particularly relevant in a regulatory intensive context such as the European Union, highly integrated in some aspects, but also characterized by specific national socio-economic and political dynamics and, furthermore, by new rules in favour of internal interests. In the European Union, the interdependence and the loss of power experienced by individual member states collide with the emergence of several local needs, such as:

  • The sustainability of national welfare state,
  • The demand for protection against/for migrants, with a strong claim of national identities,
  • The request for economic protection against highly competitive integrated markets, with a specific attention to the different aspects of globalization,
  • Politicization in courts,
  • The lack of political representation and of trust in political and economic elites, with the related malfunctioning of representative democracy and of the governance of EU,
  • The emergence of political, economic and social conflicts related to transnational terrorism and criminal threats.

The main aim of this research project is to analyse a number of specific issues within a general analysis of political and economic integration (or the lack of) at the European level, considering the evolution and the trends in (national and supranational) demand and supply of regulation and its enforcement.  This means to focus on mechanisms that favour integration and social stability, within EU and among European countries.