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A handbook – The EU and the world: players and policies post-Lisbon

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The institutional context in which the European Union conducts its external action – starting with the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) – is complex, sometimes unclear, and highly fragmented.  Moreover, the large number of players and formats for shaping, making and implementing decisions hardly facilitates a thorough understanding of the modus operandi of the Union in this domain. This volume is intended to offer interested readers a portrait of how the European Union conducts diplomacy – as well as defence, development and other related policies. It offers an overview of how the EU has evolved as a foreign policy actor especially since the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, and includes analyses of the main players in the EU system and their interplay, conveying both past dynamics and present trends. The book examines both the broader institutional context (European Commission, Parliament and Council) and the specific CFSP/CSDP set-up (the ‘multi-hatted’ High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the European External Action Service and other bodies) with a view to highlighting the challenges and opportunities they create for Europe’s foreign policy. It also describes the policies that underpin the EU’s external action, as well as covering the geographical dimension and analysing the Union’s array of ‘strategic partnerships’ throughout the world.