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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School


First Advisor

George White


According to the World Bank, over one-third of all world trade in 2000 occurred within trade blocs. Furthermore, member states contain vast amounts of natural resources and nuclear weapons, and include populations with a variety of identities. Many have boundaries located near politically volatile locations such as the eastern border of the European Union. Although trade blocs are growing in number and power, very little research has focused on the assumptions and goals of these emergent global actors. In order to analyze regional trade blocs, one must first understand of their shared ideology based on the geopolitical imaginations that facilitated their union. In the case of the European Union, geopolitical imaginations of the founding members play a significant role in the development of the assumptions and goals of the trade bloc. These geopolitical imaginations unintentionally facilitate the marginalization of non-west European member states such as Romania because of their positionality within the European Union. This study focuses on the European Union, the European Union member state of Romania, and the role of geopolitical imaginations within the European Union from 1989 to 2013. Research for this paper applies a mixed methods approach that incorporates World Development Indicators and Europe 2020 indicators with an analysis of European Union news media and official EU discourse.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Geopolitics -- Romania
Geopolitics -- European Union countries
Trade blocs
Former communist countries -- Relations -- European Union countries


Includes bibliographical references (pages 82-86)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University



Rights Statement

In Copyright