State-Building in the Western Balkans: European Approaches to Democratization (BOK)
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The Western Balkans have seen rapid changes since the end of the violent conflicts in the 1990s. The EU has been one of the main drivers for change, focusing on the political, economic and social transformation of the region to prepare the countries for membership in the Union. EU enlargement has never before been this complex and inter-connected with processes of state-building and democratization. It can be argued that the EU is actively involved in state-building. By focusing on a number of case-studies, it will be demonstrated how complex the transformation towards independent statehood and modern democratic governance has been (and continues to be) for most Western Balkan states. While some chapters focus explicitly on the role of the EU in these transformative procedures, others discuss the role of outside influences on state-building, democratization and independent governance more implicit. The picture painted is one of multiple and inter-connected alterations that have long-term consequences for the political systems of the region. This book was published as a special issue of Nationalities Papers.