The Scottish National Party and the New Vision of Europe: when Neo-functionalism is the Answer

Sandrina Antunes

In the 90's, the issue of European integration has been deeply intertwined with debates of self-determination. In this respect, processes of decentralization and supranational integration have also inspired the Scottish National Party (SNP) who have echoed a federal vision of Europe where they could anchor their nationalist project of self-determination in a context of dispersion of political power. However, with the European 2020 strategy, a new context of functional interdependence has allowed the SNP to contest the limits of British constitutional settlement through "policy delivery" in a polycentric system of governance. With this new vision of Europe, the political strategy has become economically driven and collectively performed in articulation with Scottish stakeholders, in cooperation with the center. Building on a multi-level governance approach, this paper shows that since 2007 the SNP have moved from a state-centric to a governance-centric approach to Europe which ultimately supports a neo-functionalist vision of Europe.

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