EU citizenship and free movement: Troubled partners, or a mutually reinforcing relationship?
June 19, 2018
This paper of work package 12 explores the concept of European citizenship and how it helps or hinders the free movement of people within the EU.
It examines the meaning of EU citizenship and to what extent it can be truly seen as ‘citizenship’. In its current state, the interaction between free movement and EU citizenship has created more problems than solutions, the authors argue. EU citizenship has failed to assuage deep public anxieties about free movement, and it is poorly understood as a concept in its own right – leading to a perception that its benefits are for movers alone. By contrast, if the rules and the reality of free movement were perceived as fair and beneficial, intra-EU mobility could, over time, become an important factor in fostering EU citizenship.
The paper also explores three ways to rethink EU citizenship in order to optimise free movement and mitigate its social and political costs and concludes by offering some policy recommendations.