Switzerland-EU Relations Revisited: An Analysis of Integrational Scenarios under Consideration of Political Feasibility
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With the abandonment of negotiations on a framework agreement with the EU in May 2021, the Swiss Federal Council has put the relationship between Switzerland and the EU in question. Since then, numerous suggestions on how to arrange the relationship between the two partners have been brought up. The economic consequences of these policy options are usually well-researched, but much less so their political feasibility in the Swiss and the EU political arena. The paper at hand closes this research gap by assessing the political feasibility of scenarios for the prospective Switzerland-EU relationship with help of the veto player theory. By linking both political feasibility and economic aspects of nine empirically identifiable scenarios, the continuation of the Bilateral path in conjunction with vertical institutional integration turns out to be the most promising way to advance the Switzerland-EU relationship. My results highlight the relevance of political feasibility considerations in analysing policy problems. A mere economic analysis often misses the mark and fails to render a complete picture. If expanded with a political feasibility analysis, the expected value of a policy option becomes much clearer.