Frontiers in Motion : Which models for the EU ?

    The FRONTEM Network aims at a critical assessment of the model of a Europe without borders. It is based on the assumption that the EU has developed a unilateral view on the border which essentially only takes into account its economic character whilst neglecting other aspects, more symbolic or political. Thanks to its interdisciplinary composition and its crossing over approach between European Studies and Border Studies, it will proceed with an exchange of knowledge and practices on 5 models of border management in the EU:

    • the Franco-German border of reconciliation
    • the fortress border between the UK and France
    • the invisible border between Ireland and Northern Ireland
    • the model border of minority integration between Denmark and Germany
    • the dialectical (open-closed) border between Romania and Hungary

    Each member of the network will carry out a place based analysis of its border, by associating young researchers and PHD students, on the one hand, and citizen associations, on the other. The network will then proceed with a comparative analysis with the Canada/US border to evaluate whether the European models are specific or whether they could be transposed to other regions in the world.

    Concretely, the program foresees the organisation of 1 doctoral seminar, 5 research/focus-group seminars, 1 comparative seminar and 1 final conference linked to a summer school, which will also associate Master students and secondary school classes. The network will thus establish a reasonable panorama of the perception of the border by representatives of the civil society in given cross-border territories and it will allow to develop a typology of EU border management models which can meet the political requirements and the needs of the European population.


    • 1 doctoral seminar
    • 5 seminars research/focus group
    • 1 final conference/summer school


  • Research seminar on the Franco-German border and manifesto for the future of cross-border cooperation in Europe

    FRONTEM: A manifesto for cross-border cooperation in Europe

    On 6th  and 7th October 2021 in Strasbourg and Kehl, the second research seminar of the FRONTEM Network took place. This seminar focused on the French-German border.

    FRONTEM  is a Jean Monnet network of 7 universities and educational structures in Europe and Canada whose aim is to develop international and multidisciplinary research linking European Studies and Border Studies. The network seeks to facilitate a new reading of the role of the borders in European integration by considering that there is not only one model of perception and management of borders in and around the European Union, but that these also depend on the specificity of each border region concerned.

    The seminar made it possible to analyse Franco-German cooperation while paying particular attention to the two cross-border spaces, the Greater Region and the Upper Rhine. The aim was to reflect on the perception and management of the border at the time of the Aachen Treaty and the Covid-19 crisis, while not forgetting the long tradition of cooperation and the achievements on this border. To go further, a handful of actors have drafted a manifesto for cross-border cooperation in Europe based on the experience of this French-German border. This document aims to draw the attention of our decision-makers to the current situation and makes a series of specific demands in the following categories: mutual recognition, obstacles, competences – public service – crisis management, cross-border governance, citizens and community (EU) policy.

    This manifesto was commented and discussed (french/german language) by Anne SANDER, Member of the European Parliament; Karl-Heinz LAMBERTZ, President of AEBR, member of the CoR and President of the Parliament of the German speaking community in Belgium; Klaus SCHÜLE, Director of the cross-border cooperation service of the Regierungspräsidium Freiburg; Philippe VOIRY, Ambassador for intergovernmental commissions, cooperation and border issues – French Ministry of European and Foreign Affairs. All of them welcomed the effort of synthesis constituted by this document, gave some lines of thought and assured the authors and more generally the FRONTEM network of their support. We thank them very much and we will come back to them to concretise certain proposals.

  • Research seminar on the island of Ireland

    The Northern Ireland-Ireland border
    region: Policies and practices

    On 14th March 2022, the fourth research seminar of the FRONTEM Network took place at the Queens University in Belfast. The seminar focused on policies and practices in the Northern Ireland-Ireland border region.

    Through round tables, plenary addresses and discussions, numerous topics could be raised such as: the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, the Irish Sea as a particular case of a border, the role of the North South Ministerial Council and Mobility on the Island, coordination in healthcare policy across the island of Ireland, and more.

  • Focus group on the Franco-German border on border perception and border management

    A day full of exchange: two focus groups on border perception and border management

    On 28 June 2022, the fourth focus group of the FRONTEM network took place in Kehl, Germany.

    After focus groups in three other border regions of the network had already taken place, on the one hand among citizens and on the other hand among actors of cross-border cooperation, this fourth focus group concentrated on the German-French border.

    In preparation for the focus group, the Euro-Institut had prepared an online survey on the perception and experience of the border region, with 189 respondents. First, the survey results were presented before Louise Weber and Anne Thevenet, Deputy Director of the Euro-Institut, led through various discussion topics.

    During the “breakfast workshop” in the morning, participants exchanged views among others on the role of the citizen in the border region, on difficulties and obstacles in everyday life and on the question of a common identity in the Upper Rhine region. The citizens also shared how they perceive the border and border crossing and how this perception has changed in the light of the Covid-19 crisis.
    Similar topics were also discussed in the afternoon: while enjoying coffee and cake, various actors of cross-border institutions exchanged opinions and ideas on the role of civil society, on existing legal and financial instruments and on mechanisms for identifying and resolving obstacles. The extent to which the pandemic has affected mutual trust and cross-border cooperation was also discussed.

    The results of this workshop will make an important contribution to the pedagogical kit, that will be produced on the topic of border management and border perception and that will become a tool, especially for students and practitioners of cross-border cooperation.

    We thank all participants for an interesting and lively exchange that has demonstrated clearly how important face-to-face events are!


  • Consortium

    Steering Committee

    • Birte WASSENBERG
    • Joachim BECK
    • Frédérique BERROD
    • Emmanuel BRUNET-JAILLY
    • Fabienne LELOUP
    • Bernard REITEL
    • Nicolae PAUN
    • Anthony SOARES
    • Katarzyna STOKLOSA

    Scientific Committee

    • Emmanuel BRUNET-JAILLY
    • Fabienne LELOUP
    • Bernard REITEL
    • Nicolae PAUN
    • Anthony SOARES
    • Katarzyna STOKLOSA
    • Joachim BECK
    • Sylvain SCHIRMANN
    • Frédérique BERROD
    • Nicole BATES
    • Oliver SCHMIDTKE
    • Paula MURESAN
    • Mary Mc MURPHY
    • Katy HAYWARD
    • Martin KLATT
    • Steen Bo FRANDSEN
    • Jean PEYRONY
    • Gyula OCSKAY