Hana Vykoupilová: Political Parties in the Czech Republic and their Attitudes toward European Federalism

The issue of European federalism is a topic much discussed by social scientists as well as by politicians from EU-member states. In respect to the process of European constitution ratification is obvious that the EU integration trajectory is not clear at the present time. Attitudes toward European federalism vary across Europe as well as between political parties within a single country. Czech political parties´ attitudes to the European federalism are interesting for numerous reasons. First, the Czech Republic represents a new member state in the EU. Second, the Czech Republic is a state with its own experience of federalism, which ended at the beginning of the 1990’s. Third, the Czech Republic is a state with deep tradition of European federalist thinking.

The paper deals with several questions. First, how important is the issue of European federalism for Czech political parties? Second, are the parties’ attitudes to European federalism based on ideology, or on strategy? Third, how do the parties define the European federalism? To find the answers, research questions were devised using the following methods: party program analysis, interviews with party experts, and methods of description and comparison.

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