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Local Dimensions of a Wider European Neighbourhood:Developing Political Community through Practices and Discourses of Cross-Border Co-operation (EUDIMENSIONS)

With the concept generally known as "Wider Europe", the European Union has mapped out an ambitious vision of regional "Neighbourhood" that "goes beyond co-operation to involve a significant measure of integration". Furthermore, the EU sees this new quality of regional interaction and partnership as bringing "enormous gains to all involved in terms of increased stability, security and well being". EUDIMENSIONS seeks to understand the implications of these emerging geopolitical contexts for cross-border co-operation and political relationships at the local level. More specifically, we will scrutinise the development of a "Wider European" political community as manifested by co-operation initiatives and changing political discourses that relate communities and groups to each other across national and EU borders. EUDIMENSIONS will perform this task by analysing co-operation processes and the multilevel contexts within which they operate. Case studies will focus both on specific communities and cross-border co-operation networks that often transcend local, regional and national levels in order to advance their agendas. In addition, we will also focus on civil society and gender-specific issues, aspects that require greater attention in studies of cross-border co-operation.