Genna, Gaspare M. (2003) "Images of Europe and Europeans: In-group trust and loyalty for European integration". In: UNSPECIFIED, Nashville, TN. (Unpublished)
Prior research on citizen support for European integration has primarily focused on individuals' evaluations of the process of integration or its institutions, with emphasis on the importance of direct benefits and costs integration can confer. These models do not consider individuals' evaluations of other European nationalities or of the member states. This paper will fill the gap in the research by formulating and testing a political cohesion model, which is complementary to preexisting models. The analysis synthesizes systems theory with political psychology to produce a core claim that the probability of supporting integration and developing a European identity increases with greater levels of political cohesion among European citizens and among these citizens and the European Union memberstates. The development of political cohesion, as measured by the amount of trust in Europeans and member-states, is assumed to be reflective of positive images of these two types of subjects. Political cohesion is especially critical when individuals consider nationalities of the southern periphery given their lower economic development. Therefore, trust in southern EU nationalities improves the probability that an individual will have a European identity and support integration, more so than rust in the northern EU nationalities. In addition, integration's development is marked by changes in the allocation of sovereignty that is determined by the relatively more powerful European member-states.
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