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Dressel, M: The EU and the Knowledge Economy

Dressel, M: The EU and the Knowledge Economy

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Seminar paper from the year 2007 in the subject Politics - International Politics - Topic: European Union, grade: 8/A, University of Twente , 22 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: As the world turns, the European Union and its Member States confront with both internal and external challenges. At the bottom line, however, much comes down to globalization and increased international competition. Trying to maintain wealth in times of lacking economic competitiveness, European decision makers pursue the goal of establishing a knowledge economy. In the following, this issue shall be addressed more intensively. After a brief introduction and clarification of the terminology that the discussion will be based on a general outline on what needs to be done in order to successfully create a knowledge economy will follow. In the remainder, this factual information is to be related to the case of the European Union. Therein, the ambitions and goals set by the Union itself shall be addressed. This will finally lead to the core of the paper, that is, the question of probable economic and therefore social implications in Europe. It needs to be analysed whether the creation of a European knowledge economy would not result in a mere cementation of the current socio-economic division in the European Union. After all, the European Union is not a coherent economic and social area at this stage. So is there a reasonable chance of turning the single market into a broad knowledge-based economy at all? There are huge discrepancies between regions already within single Member States. Some parts are economic powerhouses and do fairly well in international competition whereas others lack behind and seem to be about to be abandoned altogether. Here, the notion of Mezzogiorrni stands exemplarily. Wide parts of Europe have not been acquainted with knowledge intensive production processes so far. An entire focus on high technology industries may therefore put an end to the economic catch-up process altogether, particularly in Eastern and Southern EU Member States. May therefore the 'threat' of a Europe of different speeds in social and economic terms become unavoidable, and put the entire integration process at stake?
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