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A wicked problem

How to cooperate with collusive states?
06 April 2021
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At a time of huge international upheaval, a failure to resolve its ‘wicked problems’ risks leaving the EU paralysed on the world stage. This class of problem is characterised by contradictory political pressures, typically a clash of interests and principles. It is exemplified by the dilemma of whether to accommodate partner states that collude with criminals.

The EU has always believed that collusion precludes liberal development outcomes. But now, facing political pressure to engage with as broad a range of states as possible, it is hard-pressed to reassess its beliefs. This Chaillot Paper looks for evidence that collusion can in fact promote positive outcomes, and in so doing develops a methodology which could help resolve other similarly intractable problems.

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