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Reinl, Ann-Kathrin ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3780-3101 and Braun, Daniela ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3962-2021 (2023): Who holds the union together? Citizens’ preferences for European Union cohesion in challenging times. In: European Union Politics, Vol. 24, No. 2: pp. 390-409 [PDF, 1MB]

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Although polarisation risks breaking up the European family, such conflicts paired with transnational challenges can also raise awareness of the need for more European Union (EU) cohesion. In order to approach the hitherto underspecified concept, this article connects the recent literature on social cohesion with research on various facets of public EU support – integration preferences, identity, voting behaviour, and solidarity. Building on survey data from 10 EU countries taken at the end of 2020, a latent class analysis identifies two distinct groups of preferences for EU cohesion: its friends and its foes. EU cohesion can be achieved by highlighting personal advantages of European integration and by stressing joint approaches to crises, civic education, and democratic processes.

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