What’s in a Name? Challenges to the Creation of EU Delegations

In: The Hague Journal of Diplomacy
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One of the Lisbon Treaty’s most significant innovations was the creation of the European External Action Service (EEAS), which changed the EU’s functioning not only in Brussels, but also around the world. Zooming in on the multilateral context of the UN in New York, this article examines the new EU delegations and highlights the main challenges that are inherent in their establishment. These delegations could be engrafted upon a wide network of European Commission delegations, yet the literature gives little indication of success in integrating the functions and actors. Adding to the literature and building upon interviews with policy officials in both Brussels and New York, this article indicates an additional external challenge in implementing Lisbon’s provisions, with the context of the UN General Assembly raising more fundamental questions on status and membership — questions that have also shaped the role of the EU delegation to the UN during its first year of operation.

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