The paper explores the state of academic dialogue between the Russian and Western scholarly communities studying the European Union (EU)–Russia relations in Justice and Home Affairs (JHA). By analyzing the citation patterns of the academic articles on the EU–Russia cooperation in this area, we arrive at the conclusion that the Russian scholarship mostly does not engage in a transnational academic dialogue with the Western counterparts. In other words, it has turned into a sealed ‘indigenous’ scholarly community. And what is more, it is also disintegrated within itself since the Russian scholars do not refer to the research produced by their compatriots either. To qualitatively substantiate our findings, in the last section of the paper, we review the universe of all articles written on the topic in Russian to distinguish five trends typical of the research published in Russian academic journals. We believe that these features are the result of the lack of engagement with the Western scholarship and simultaneously the cause which prevents the communication between the two scholarly communities. This, in turn, undermines the accumulation of the transnational multifaceted policy-relevant expertise essential for normalizing the relations between Brussels and Moscow in general and in JHA in particular.
The article introduces a special issue on studying EU-Russian relations. It overviews Russian- and English-language academic research to identify whether there is sufficient dialogue on issues studied, theories applied and categories used for a transnational epistemic community to emerge. This latter would allow the academic world to better contribute to the resolution of the present crisis in EU-Russian relations. Although an overlap is identified in issues, theories and categories the article exposes multiple differences in how they are approached in English- and Russian-language academic writings. These findings challenge the existence of a transnational epistemic community in EU-Russian relations. The article concludes by discussing steps to make for this community to develop, and introduces contributions to the special issue.
The article examines partnerships for modernisation between Russia, on the one hand, and the EU as well as 23 out of its 28 member states, on the other hand. In doing that it first identifies the difference between the Russian economic interpretation of modernisation and the EU's one based on political values. The article then demonstrates the ambiguity rather than singularity of the position that EU member states promote in their modernisation partnerships with Russia. To illustrate the difference among EU member states’ the article designs a scale of Russia’s sensitivity to various political aspects of modernization and then posits member states on this scale on the basis of their national partnerships for modernisation with Russia. As a result, a new classification of EU member states emerges; it is based on the extent, to which they are ready to defend the political definition of modernisation (and ultimately the EU's normative power) in their relations with Russia.