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Small Member States as Policy Actors in the EU: Defining a New Strategy through the Case of Hungary

Veronika Czina

The proposed research aims at examining Hungary as a small Member State in the European Union, more precisely its strategic possibilities and actions to successfully influence European policy outcomes and achieve its own policy priorities. This topic is increasingly relevant for the future of European integration due to the growing number of small states in the EU and the fact that the strategies they follow as Member States may serve as an example for their peers. I argue that, in the past few years, Hungary has adopted a particular strategy as a Member State in the EU which is significantly different from its previously pursued strategy and which is also unconventional among Central and Eastern European EU members. Moreover, this strategy has not been accounted for in previous EU studies, which usually focus on outlining strategies or circumstances under which small states can exercise influence despite the apparent disadvantages they face compared to the large countries. The proposed research uses the already existing theories on small states in the EU as a frame, and it aims to find answers to the following question: can the arguably new, distinct Hungarian behavior be considered to be a small state strategy to influence EU policy-making?

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