Since the advent of the 1992 Maastricht Treaty, a key turning point in terms of the crystallisation of opposition towards the European Union (EU), Euroscepticism has become a transnational phenomenon. The term ‘Euroscepticism’ has become common political language in all EU member states and, with the advent of the Eurozone, refugee and security crises have become increasingly ‘embedded’ within European nation states.

Bringing together a collection of essays by established and up-and-coming authors in the field, this handbook paints a fuller, more holistic picture of the extent to which the Eurosceptic debate has influenced the EU and its member states. Crucially, it also focuses on what the consequences of this development are likely to be for the future direction of the European project. By adopting a broad-based, thematic approach, the volume centres on theory and conceptualisation, political parties, public opinion, non-party groups, the role of referendums – and the media – and of scepticism within the EU institutions. It also reflects on the future of Euroscepticism studies following the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the EU.

Containing a full range of thematic contributions from eminent scholars in the field, The Routledge Handbook of Euroscepticism is a definitive frame of reference for academics, practitioners and those with an interest in the debate about the EU, and more broadly for students of European Studies, EU and European Politics.

part I|60 pages


chapter 1|8 pages

Defining Euroscepticism

From a broad concept to a field of study

chapter 2|11 pages

Contemporary Research on Euroscepticism

The state of the art

chapter 5|13 pages


Stand-alone phenomenon or embedded within a broader cleavage?

part II|126 pages

Eurosceptic parties and domestic party systems

chapter 6|12 pages

Euroscepticism and Political Parties

Theory and practice

chapter 8|14 pages

Opposing Europe, Opposing Austerity

Radical left parties and the Eurosceptic debate

chapter 11|12 pages

Party-Based Euroscepticism in the Nordic Region

Ever more ‘reluctant Europeans’?

chapter 12|16 pages

Eurosceptic Parties in the Central and Eastern European Countries

A comparative case study of Poland, Hungary and Bulgaria

chapter 13|13 pages

Changing the Rules, Changing the Winners?

The various effects of European election rules on party oppositions to the EU in France

chapter 14|19 pages

Losing Loyalty

The rise of polity Euroscepticism in Southern Europe

part III|104 pages

Public opinion, referendums and citizens' perceptions of the European Union

chapter 15|15 pages

Soft Sceptics and Hard Rejectionists

Identifying two types of Eurosceptic voters

chapter 17|16 pages

Eurosceptic Youth

Interest, trust and ideology 1

chapter 19|13 pages

Derailing European Integration?

Euroscepticism and the politics of EU referendums

chapter 20|12 pages

EU Referendums in the ‘New’ Member States

Politicisation after a decade of support?

chapter 21|12 pages

Referendums and European Integration

The case of the United Kingdom

chapter 22|11 pages

When ‘No’ Means ‘Yes’

A comparative study of referendums in Denmark and Ireland

part IV|78 pages

Non-state actors

chapter 24|11 pages

Euroscepticism and the Crisis

'Critical Europeanism' and anti-austerity social movements

chapter 26|13 pages

Euroscepticism and Trade Unionism

The crisis of ‘Social Europe’

chapter 27|13 pages

Mirroring or Setting the Political Agenda?

The role of the media in the Eurosceptic debate

chapter 28|12 pages

Varieties of Opposition to the EU in the Low Countries

A comparison of the Dutch and Flemish press

part V|56 pages

Transnational and pan-European Euroscepticism

chapter 29|13 pages

Euroscepticism in the EU Institutions

A persistent and embedded phenomenon

chapter 30|13 pages

Transnational and Pan-European Euroscepticism

The case of the European Conservatives and Reformists

chapter 31|16 pages

Eurosceptic Members of the European Parliament

Foxes in the henhouse?

chapter 32|12 pages

The Far Right and the 2014 European Elections

Consequences for the Eurosceptic debate

part VI|53 pages


chapter 34|12 pages

Voting to Leave

Economic insecurity and the Brexit vote

chapter 35|12 pages

How the Referendum Was Lost

An analysis of the UK referendum campaign on EU membership

chapter 36|10 pages


Euroscepticism and European (dis)integration in the age of Brexit