School of Law and Politics

Centre for European Union Studies

EU Image

The Centre for European Union Studies (CEUS) has been designated as a ‘Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence' in teaching and research by the European Commission since 1999. In the United Kingdom, the CEUS is one of the longest established and most research active centres dedicated to the study of European Union (EU) governance and politics. The CEUS hosts a Jean Monnet Chair in European Union Studies, is administered from the Department of Politics and International Studies and was established to promote the inter-disciplinary study of the European Union (EU) and wider Europe.

The CEUS runs a seminar series, organises conferences, hosts the Jean Monnet lecture and is involved in many other events (such as workshops, the Euro Info week for local businesses and conferences for schools). CEUS also publishes a research working paper series. It provides an intellectual home for a lively postgraduate research community which is strongly encouraged to get involved in its activities.

CEUS researchers have a wide range of expertise and have produced a large number of well regarded publications on European and EU governance and politics issues. Recent research and publications have focused, for example, on EU institutions (including the Commission, European Parliament and the office of the Presidency), the Europeanisation of member states (such as the UK, Germany, France, Austria, Sweden and Southern European member states including Italy, Portugal and Spain), EU external relations, new modes of EU governance, EU environmental policy and ‘new' environmental policy instruments as well as other common policies. CEUS researchers have special expertise also on issues such as EU technology and industrial policies, the information society and European integration, the EU and e-governance, the EU's role as a global actor (including EU-Chinese relations, EU-Russian relations and EU-US relations) as well as on member state domestic politics (in particular the politics of Austria, Britain, France, Germany, Poland, Portugal and Sweden) and member state parliaments.  

Aims and objectives of the Centre

  • To promote academic excellence in research, publications and education on EU-related issues and wider Europe;
  • To provide a stimulating interdisciplinary research environment for staff and students;
  • To foster understanding of the EU in the region.

Recent publications based on CEUS workshops:

European Disunion Book Image

Jack Hayward and Rüdiger Wurzel (eds) European Disunion: Between Sovereignty and Solidarity. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2012.


The Euro crisis catapulted the European Union into its most serious political crisis since its inception, leaving it simultaneously torn between opposing demands for more sovereignty and solidarity. Throughout its history, the Union has been plagued by power struggles between its member states. Periodic crises have been met by indecision and compromise that put securing agreement above effective outcomes. The complexity of its decision making processes is mainly due to the refusal to concentrate power and wish to preserve enough semblance of national sovereignty to retain the respect and loyalty of member state citizens. This edited volume focuses on the key themes of disunion, sovereignty and solidarity. It assesses all of the main EU institutions: member states, civil society actors and policy areas.

EU Climate Change

Rüdiger Wurzel and James Connelly (eds) The European Union as a Leader in International Climate Change Politics. London: Routledge (hardback edition 2010; paperback edition 2012).


The EU has developed into a leader in international climate change politics although it was originally set up as a ‘leaderless Europe’ in which decision-making powers are spread amongst EU institutional, member state and societal actors. The central aim of this book, which is written by leading experts in the field, is to explain what kind of leadership has been offered by EU institutional, member state and societal actors. Although leadership is the overarching theme of the book, all chapters also address ecological modernisation, policy instruments, and multi-level governance as additional main themes. The book chapters focus on the Commission, European Parliament, European Council and Council of Ministers as well as member states (Britain, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Poland and Spain) and societal actors (businesses and environmental NGOs). Additional chapters analyse the EU as a global actor and the climate change policies of America and China and how they have responded to the EU’s ambitions.

Leaderless Europe Book image

Jack Hayward (ed) Leaderless Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008.


The argument that the European Community/Union was always intended to be a leaderless, mainly confederal association member states has been confirmed since publication by the Lisbon Treaty’s multiplication of would-be leaders and the inability to agree on common action to deal with the major financial and migration problems confronting the EU. Consensus is harder to achieve and intractable power struggles predominate.

A Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence

Back to top