viernes, 3 de enero de 2014

My PhD Thesis

Dear readers,
Firstly, I would like to share with you my joy. I'm pleased to let you know that I have finished my PhD Thesis. 
Secondly, though the thesis is written in Spanish, here you have an abstract in English. I intend to translate the whole project into English in the coming months. 
In case you are interested in getting full access to the document, I will soon be able to share with you the link to the digital thesis in full text. Hope it will be of interest to you all.

The aim of the thesis is to put forward a proposal to stabilise the euro area in the context of the euro crisis and its contradictions, given the premise that in order to ensure the sustainability of the single currency, federal achievements so far must be consolidated. In this research it is assessed to what extent the euro crisis fosters political reform. 

It is also an aim of the research to analyse the context and the development of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), in order to set a normative theory of federalism, so that it becomes a suitable theoretical framework to assess in full the functioning of the EU laws and institutions as a whole, but, particularly in the EMU. 

The old frames seem to be worn out and too monolithic to allow for a proper interpretation of the euro area reform. The diachronic analysis of the European integration process allows us to conclude that a process of incremental federalism is well on the way, though there are some loopholes to be sorted out, specially the democratic deficit. These gaps, in fact, are one of the key elements to explain the conclusions of this research. 

Once it has been possible to set an explanatory variable, and having reached a clear conclusion on the failings of the euro area, the thesis demonstrates that rather than becoming an optimal currency area, the EMU may have, in fact, exacerbated the economic asymmetries between Member States. 

Federalism is a perfect analytical frame, for it sets out the guidelines to be followed in the realm of the European economic governance. We therefore get to prospective conclusions regarding the institutional reform to be addressed in order to achieve the aim of giving efficiency and legitimacy to the governing system in the euro area. 

At the same time, we conclude that more analytical coherence is needed to construe how the political and economic actors receive and understand the euro crisis. In this context, it is necessary to assess whether the monetary orthodoxy and the budgetary discipline can offer the right solution to the problem. In this sense, the financial markets react to their perception about the political union (or disunity) in the euro area. 

One of the most relevant conclusions is that the economic and financial actors ask for a political response. A supranationally integrated system is expected. This requires a frame of political union, i.e. an explicit federal frame. The intergovernmentalist logic lacks the capacity to achieve the goal of financial and political sustainability in the euro area, not to mention the dissociation of decision-making and public opinion. As reflected in certain improvements in market, over the last five years significant progress has been made towards stabilising the euro area. 

The underlying structural reform and the market response generate a pressure towards supranationalism. The foundations of the EMU are being changed, sometimes going beyond the treaties. This trend is validated when we look at the bailout mechanisms, the ECB intervention, and, particularly, the Banking Union

The thesis is enriched by the analysis of the economic governance, and the political relevance of the single market, the budgetary procedure and the fiscal federalism. The capacity to build up a legitimate system would be an essential step to ensure the viability of the euro. Thus, the euro crisis has a political nature, which takes us to conclude that the loopholes in the institutional building put the euro project at stake, in a context in which democratic legitimacy is of utmost relevance.