Eurometropolis Lille-Kortrijk-Tournai: Cross-border integration with or without the border?

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Series Title
Series Details Vol.25, No.3, 2018, p.320–336
Publication Date September 2018
ISSN 0969-7764 (print) | 1461-7145 (online)
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For 30 years, the opening of internal borders in the European Union has engendered many cross-border exchanges in borderlands. European cross-border regions created within this context are thus framed and characterized by the simultaneous dynamics of bordering and cross-border integration.

This paper examines these two processes and the analysis is based on the representations of stakeholders from the Eurometropolis of Lille–Kortrijk–Tournai. It highlights two main results.

First, the representations of stakeholders shed light on bordering dynamics that can be combined even though they can also appear to be contradictory. In particular, the paper unveils the dimension of ‘a-bordering’, which refers to a certain status quo of and about the border.

Second, the representations of stakeholders show ambivalent and concomitant visions of a ‘cross-border integration with the border’ and a ‘cross-border integration without the border’. These representations challenge the implementation of cross-border policies and schemes.

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