Resilience in the European Union and Russia: Essence and Perspectives of the New Concept

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2019-63-6-102-109

T. Romanova (,
Saint-Petersburg State University, 1/3 (entrance 8), Smolnogo Str., Saint-Petersburg, 193060, Russian Federation;
E. Pavlova (,
Saint-Petersburg State University, 1/3 (entrance 8), Smolnogo Str., Saint-Petersburg, 193060, Russian Federation;
University of Tartu, Lossi, 36, 51003 Tartu, Estonia


The article defines the position of Russia in the European Union’s concept of resilience as it is put forward in the 2016 Global Strategy, five principles of relations with the Russian Federation and consequent documents. The discourse analysis of EU documents demonstrates that Russia is linked to resilience through threats, which – as Brussels believes – Moscow provokes. These are the challenges of energy supply, fake news, cybersecurity, chemical weapon and security services’ activities. Two approaches to dealing with these threats are identified. The realistic one presupposes isolation of the European Union from these threats. The liberal one is based on the inclusion of threats and their places of origin, given the complexity of the world and impossibility of fences as they challenge market principles, civil freedoms and benefits of the interconnected world. This liberal approach constitutes the basis of resilience in the EU and presumes a construction of spaces that include both the European Union and territories beyond its geographical borders (inter alia Russia). This inclusion – although it is in line with theoretical writings on resilience – is problematic for Moscow for four reasons. 1) Unevenness of inclusion originates from diversity of fields of cooperation, time and diversity of the EU member states. 2) Inclusion solely through threats that Russia provokes is a limited form of inclusion. 3) Russia is included as a part of several spaces – energy, information, cyberspace, free circulation of people and goods, – but not in the governance system of these spaces. 4) Although resilience presupposes actions of states and societies, the European Union views partners mostly in the civil society of Russia while limiting cooperation with its state institutions. Although resilience might constitute a concept for future EU-Russia relations, it cannot be applied in the way it is currently promoted by the EU.


EU, EU-Russia relations, resilience, energy security, fake news, cybersecurity


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For citation:
Romanova T., Pavlova E. Resilience in the European Union and Russia: Essence and Perspectives of the New Concept. Mirovaya ekonomika i mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya, 2019, vol. 63, No 6, pp. 102-109.

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