Skip to main navigation menu Skip to main content Skip to site footer

The Making of Europe - Conventional or Unconventional? The Convention as an Alternative Method of Drafting European Treaties


This article presents a critical analysis of the Convention method, which was
used to draft the founding treaties underpinning European integration. The
article examines the nature, advantages, and disadvantages of the
Convention method, comparing it with the traditional Intergovernmental
Conference (IGC) method. After identifying the general features of the
Convention and the IGC, we compare the behaviour of four small EU
Member States (Belgium, Ireland, the Czech Republic, and Estonia) at the
Convention on the Future of the European Union. Following this, we focus
on the elements of socialization and rational bargaining manifest in the
four countries' behaviour. Finally, we show how aspects of
intergovernmental diplomacy and parliamentary procedures are mixed in
the Convention model, and how certain aspects of deliberative democracy
mingle with rational choice bargaining.


European Union, Convention, IGC, socialization, rational bargaining, deliberation, intergovernmental institutionalism, constructivism

PDF Research Article (Czech)