The southern and eastern peripheries of Europe: Is convergence a lost cause?
Core-periphery relations play an important role within nation states, across continents and at the global level. The crisis has taken an extraordinary toll on the Union's institutions, political actors, and legal and policy-making systems. It has turned attention inwards and had a negative impact on perceptions of the European Union (EU) in the international system. The Eurozone crisis was and remains a critical juncture for European governance and integration. The EU evolved as a highly fragmented, sector-driven system of public policy-making with multiple access points and a high level of consensus. The national economies of the member states are quite heterogenous and diverse in terms of GDP per capita, strength of the welfare state, nature of flexicurity, and quality of the democratic political system. The United Kingdom, as a non-euro member state, was at the margins of the crisis. The crisis exposed deep fissures in the design of EMU as the crisis impacted very differently on Eurozone member states.