The multi-dimensional EU crisis explored in this book has generated negative and positive images of the Union. Critics argue that the crisis has resulted in the EU losing credibility both as an international economic player and as a ‘soft power’ foreign policy actor and that its lack of decisive responses to key international events has critically impaired both its institutional integrity and its overall presence. Defenders of the EU, in contrast, contend that, despite setbacks, the EU’s global image remains intact, based on its many and varying worldwide initiatives that range from promoting peace and stability in its neighbourhood to development policy, humanitarian assistance, and climate change mitigation. Critical matters examined in this book are the various impacts the crisis has had on the EU and the overall consequences for the EU in the short and long term. This chapter takes an outside-in approach by examining the challenges to the EU in terms of the abiding identity that it currently holds in the eyes of a range of external others, the reputational damage done to this identity as a result of the EU’s responses to the crisis, and the subsequent impact this has had on the EU’s strategic relationships with Russia, the USA, and China.
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- The EU’s Global Image
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- Chapter 15