In This Review

The Road to Maastricht: Negotiating Economic and Monetary Union
The Road to Maastricht: Negotiating Economic and Monetary Union
By Kenneth Dyson and Kevin Featherstone
Oxford University Press, 2000, 859 pp.

This enormous, theoretically informed account of European economic and monetary union (EMU) is unlikely to be superseded. The authors stress the crucial role of beliefs and knowledge in shaping interests and the importance of successful political entrepreneurship and institutions -- without burying the reader under endless detail. Downplaying the role of domestic interests, Dyson and Featherstone also highlight factors external to the process of negotiation, including the main actors' life experiences and commitments. Germany did play a key role in shaping EMU but did not create a German model writ large -- because the German institutional context does not exist at the European level. Like so many previous European compromises, EMU is fuzzy and unfinished; although it stems from neoliberal inspiration, not every member has repudiated all the tenets of Keynes. Hence tensions remain between neoliberal ideologues, who fret that EMU is not strong enough to guarantee stability and rigor, and Keynesians, who fear that emu will be deflationary and stifle growth. EMU's success, the authors conclude, depends on "a major economic revival in Europe" and "the absence of an early external economic shock."