Reasoned 'balance' in Europe's area of freedom, security and justice

Gibbs, Alun Howard (2010) Reasoned 'balance' in Europe's area of freedom, security and justice. European Law Journal, 17, (1), 121-137. (doi:10.1111/j.1468-0386.2010.00541.x).


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This article considers how we might understand a constitutional ‘balancing’ of goods. In doing so, the article considers the EU's ‘Area of Freedom, Security and Justice’ (AFSJ) which poses the challenge as to how we balance our desire to feel secure with commitments to freedom and justice. The approach taken will be to argue that a ‘balance’ is a reasoned judgment, which must be understood in both a symbolic sense but, at the same time, also rooted in the practice of our constitutional decision making. This enables a political community to make sense of its value commitments so as to achieve a reflective balance between them. The article concludes that if the EU is to achieve an area of freedom, security and justice then it must be capable of developing a balance that can be a reasoned understanding of this constitutional commitment.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1111/j.1468-0386.2010.00541.x
ISSNs: 1351-5993 (print)
1468-0386 (electronic)
Subjects: J Political Science > JC Political theory
J Political Science > JX International law
K Law > K Law (General)
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Law
ePrint ID: 178277
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
28 December 2010Made publicly available
January 2011Published
Date Deposited: 25 Mar 2011 11:29
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 13:34

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