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The Triple Crisis in the New Member States: The Historical Trajectory of NMS-8 in the Past Quarter Century

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image of Southeastern Europe

After the first decade following their inclusion, it is a good occasion to evaluate the developments of the New Member States in the EU. This paper tries to conceptualize the historical trajectory of the NMS from the perspectives of the first quarter century, in which the states have undergone three crises, termed in the paper as the ‘triple crisis’. The triple crisis is discussed in this paper in the case of eight NMS (NMS-8). The first part of the paper deals with the heavy social price paid by the NMS populations during the systemic change, and the following parts analyse the ensuing decline in democracy, good governance, and competitiveness. Finally, in the conclusion the question of the ‘re-entry’ of NMS into the EU is raised, pointing out that there have also been some signs of creative crisis that may bring ‘a better future’ if the NMS can have a second try at catching up in the processes of Europeanization and democratization.

Affiliations: 1: Institute of Political Science, Budapest Corvinus University,


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