1. A short presentation of the ‘Pierre Werner and Europe’ research project
In 2010, the CVCE launched a research project dedicated to the European vocation and achievements of Pierre Werner (29 December 1913–24 June 2002), a former Prime Minister (1959–1974 and 1979–1984), Finance Minister and Foreign Minister of Luxembourg, unanimously recognised as one of the architects of Economic and Monetary Union.
This research notably involves the ongoing consultation of the private archives of the Werner family, focusing on various specific topics. The CVCE has been granted privileged access to these archives through a partnership agreement signed with the Werner family. These archives, compiled by a figure who actively participated in three decades of European integration, had long remained unexplored. They have already yielded a host of original documents that shed new light on various aspects of the European integration process and also on the role of Luxembourg and its European policy.
The first stage of the research project focuses on the plan for the establishment by stages of an economic and monetary union in the Community (more widely known as the Werner Report or the Werner Plan), drawn up by a group of experts chaired by Pierre Werner and officially presented on 8 October 1970 in Luxembourg. The project will then concentrate on the events that subsequently led to the achievement of Economic and Monetary Union, as seen from the perspective of Pierre Werner’s own contribution; it will also examine a number of issues related to European integration in which the former Luxembourg Prime Minister was particularly involved, such as the question of the seats of the Community institutions, the Luxembourg Compromise, the accession of the United Kingdom, and cooperation between the Benelux countries.
At the end of each stage of the project, the results will be structured and presented in the form of digital research corpora, 2 the first of which focuses on the Werner Report and is geared towards the academic community. They will be subject to a peer review process by a steering committee of external experts prior to publication in the dedicated research space of the site www.cvce.eu. The creation of a subject file for educational purposes is also in the pipeline, as is the organisation of an academic event based on the general theme of the project. These will both be subject to a peer review process.
According to specialists in the field, and as laid down in the triennial agreement between the Luxembourg Government (represented by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research) and the CVCE (CVCE/CP2-11-13), ‘a digital research corpus is a collection of primary sources and related resources on a particular theme. Corpora are aimed at the research community and are geared towards intensive research and the analysis of specific research questions. In addition to sources and resources, research corpora also include two further dimensions: tools and academic expertise.’ 3
It is also intended that the two research corpora and the subject file should incorporate and exploit a diverse range of other documentary resources, including sound, video and image archives and specific oral accounts recorded by the CVCE.
1.1 Preparatory work
Given the broad subject area, the incremental development of the research project and the wealth of material contained in the Pierre Werner family archives and the other sources consulted, it was important to lay the ground by carrying out some general preparatory work.
The results of this preparatory work include a comprehensive, regularly updated bibliography of works by Pierre Werner and about Pierre Werner and his European achievements; biographical and chronological information on Pierre Werner’s role in the creation of a monetary Europe; 4 and sound and video extracts from interviews conducted by the CVCE with members of Pierre Werner’s family and people who worked alongside him during his career.
A public presentation of the research project and its initial results took place on 27 January 2011 during a conference supported by the Luxembourg National Research Fund at which Jean-Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg and President of the Eurogroup, gave a lecture entitled ‘From the Werner Plan to the euro: 40 years of success and crisis’. 5
1.2 Oral and video accounts recorded by the CVCE
In addition to the exploration of the Werner family archives, a further strong point of the project is the series of interviews recorded by the CVCE with Luxembourg and European figures who share their memories and thoughts concerning Pierre Werner, his achievements and his views on the European integration process. These interviews, which also cover other subjects such as Economic and Monetary Union and Luxembourg’s European policy, represent new sources that will prove valuable not only for the various research projects carried out at the CVCE but more generally for the research community. Their heritage value also means that they will be of interest for other sectors of the public. The CVCE is actively pursuing this important project to collect first-hand accounts from people who have played a key part in the European integration process.
All the excerpts relating to the ‘Pierre Werner and Europe’ research project, as well as the full versions of these interviews — some of which have been transcribed and/or translated into English or German — have already been published at www.cvce.eu.
The figures that have been interviewed thus far are as follows (in alphabetical order):
· Luc Frieden, Luxembourg Finance Minister;
· Albert Hansen, Member of the Council of State, former Secretary-General of the Government, former Head of Cabinet of HRH the Grand Duke;
· Edmond Israel (†), Honorary Chairman of Clearstream International;
· Jean-Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg, President of the Eurogroup;
· Yves Mersch, President of the Banque Centrale du Luxembourg;
· Charles-Ferdinand Nothomb, Minister of State of Belgium, President of the European Circle entitled ‘Perspectives et réalités frontalières’ (the Cercle Pierre Werner);
· Lex Roth, former Director of the Information and Press Service of the Luxembourg Government;
· Charles Ruppert, Chairman of the Pierre Werner Foundation, Vice-President of the Luxembourg School of Finance;
· Jacques Santer, Honorary Minister of State, former President of the European Commission;
· René Steichen, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SES (originally known as the ‘Société européenne des satellites’), former European Commissioner responsible for Agriculture and Rural Development;
· Hans Tietmeyer, former alternate member of the Werner Committee, former President of the Bundesbank.
Members of the Werner family, particularly Marie-Anne Werner and Henri Werner, have also contributed their accounts on the personality and work of Pierre Werner.
Other accounts concerning the personality and European achievements of Pierre Werner have emerged during interviews conducted for the CVCE’s project ‘Accounts by Luxembourg Ambassadors’ (Jean-Jacques Kasel, Adrien Meisch, Jean Mischo and Guy de Muyser), as well as interviews with Jacques Delors, former President of the European Commission, Jacques de Larosière, former Managing Director of the IMF and former Governor of the Banque de France, Mark Eyskens, former Belgian Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, and Wilfried Martens, former Belgian Prime Minister.
2. Digital research corpus on the Werner Report
The first digital research corpus developed in connection with the ‘Pierre Werner and Europe’ project is based on the Werner Report 6 and is entitled ‘A rereading of the Werner Report of 8 October 1970 in the light of the Pierre Werner family archives’. It particularly focuses on the pivotal year of 1970, and goes on to cover the period up to February 1974, when the report was put on hold. The research for this first phase does not cover Pierre Werner’s other contributions to European integration such as the ‘battle of the seats’ of the Community institutions, UK accession, BLEU, Benelux and the role of Luxembourg in the European integration process.
The previously unpublished archives of the Werner family have shed new light on the Werner Report and on Pierre Werner’s personal contribution to the work of the group of experts he chaired, in the context of his European achievements as a whole. Non-exhaustive research in other archives — both public and private, Luxembourgish and international — have added to the variety of our sources. The series of historical accounts recorded by the CVCE on Pierre Werner and his role in the establishment of Economic and Monetary Union offer specific added value and provide new resources for the research community. The exploration of these primary and related sources has resulted in a detailed analytical study being written on the subject. This text follows the same structure as the corpus and forms an integral part of it.
We have chosen to focus on analysing and exploring the Pierre Werner family archives rather than trying to highlight all the potentially relevant resources or carrying out a critical analysis of existing literature on the subject.
The focus of the digital research corpus is not the Werner Report in itself — this is a subject which has long captured the interest of researchers and has already been the focus of a large number of specialist publications — but the mindset in which the Werner Report was developed, as revealed by the private papers of the man who served as chairman of the ad hoc committee. We have sought to identify and highlight the various personal initiatives taken by Pierre Werner as the plan by stages was developed and adopted — whether on a theoretical, methodological or political level. In so doing, we have attempted to gauge and analyse the varied, nuanced contribution made by Pierre Werner to the establishment of monetary Europe, rather than emphasising the role played by his colleagues and peers. Two additional elements also affirm the validity of this approach: the absence of sufficient archives detailing how the plan by stages was drafted and how the necessary political compromise was secured, and also the discreet personality of Pierre Werner, who, even when he experienced personal success, preferred to remain in the background and to emphasise ‘collective authorship’.
2.2 A range of diverse and previously unpublished sources
In terms of primary sources, the corpus has around 650 documents, including multimedia research material (such as sound and video archives and images) from various collections, mainly the Pierre Werner family archives.
The corpus has been written in French. A full English version will subsequently be added.
All these multilingual resources are published by the CVCE, in their original language version if possible (particularly if this is French, English or German), with a precise indication of the source and an explanatory caption to set the document in context.
2.2.1 The Pierre Werner family archives, 7 opened for the first time for research purposes, make an essential contribution to this digital research corpus. They contain a wealth of documents gathered by Pierre Werner from the 1950s onwards, including manuscripts, handwritten notes and comments on official documents, exchanges of letters with various figures, diplomatic correspondence, institutional texts, graphs, diagrams and statistics, as well as a large number of press articles on the European integration process and on economic and monetary questions. This material is accompanied by reports, speeches and public statements on a range of subjects made by Pierre Werner or published during his career. It also includes a collection of images containing many photos and original snapshots, together with a series of sound and video recordings.
2.2.2 In line with the research approach outlined above, other sources and archives — public and private, Luxembourg and European — have also been consulted, depending on the time and material resources available and the accessibility of these collections.
The Luxembourg-based sources include the Luxembourg National Archives (those of the Ministry of State and the Ministry of Finance), the diplomatic archives (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the archives of the Banque Centrale du Luxembourg (particularly those of the Luxembourg Monetary Institute), archive material from the Government’s Information and Press Service, the documentary collection of the National Library of Luxembourg, documents from the Luxembourg City Photo Library, archives from the Société Européenne des Satellites and the Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion, and a range of press and audiovisual archives. Documents from the Ernest Michels private collection were also consulted.
With regard to the European sources used, we should mention the documentary collections of the European institutions 8 such as the Historical Archives of the European Commission in Brussels (including the archives of the committees whose chairmen made up the ad hoc group of experts: the Monetary Committee, the Committee of Governors of the Central Banks, the Conjunctural Policy Committee, the Medium-Term Economic Policy Committee and the Budgetary Policy Committee), the Historical Archives of the Council of the European Union in Brussels, the European Parliament Archive and Documentation Centre (CARDOC) in Luxembourg City, the archives of the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, and the archives of the European Commission Audiovisual Library.
Diplomatic documents from the archives of the Belgian Foreign Ministry, the Netherlands Foreign Ministry, the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs (La Courneuve), the German Federal Archives (Koblenz), the Italian Historical Diplomatic Archives (Rome) and various BLEU and Benelux documentary collections were also consulted. The archives of the central banks of the six Member States that made up the European Community in 1970, along with various other public and private archives, have not yet been explored.
For the publication of this digital research corpus, care was taken to select material that would complement the corpus in the best way possible, providing a context for sources from the Pierre Werner family archives and enriching and increasing the variety of sources available for the research community.
2.2.3 The historical accounts 9 recorded by the CVCE with Luxembourg and European figures who share their memories and thoughts on Pierre Werner, his achievements and his views on the European integration process represent one of the project’s real strengths. These video accounts (see section 1.2) are new sources for the research community, constituting a wealth of material that will also be of interest to the wider public. A number of interviews with key witnesses to EMU are in the pipeline, having been agreed to by the potential interviewees but not yet carried out. These include interviews with Hendrikus Johannes Witteveen (born 1921), former Finance Minister of the Netherlands and then Managing Director of the IMF; Emilio Colombo (born 1921), former Italian Finance Minister; Michel Camdessus (born 1933), former Governor of the Banque de France and former Managing Director of the IMF; and Jean-Claude Trichet (born 1942), former President of the European Central Bank.
2.2.4 All the resources cited above were initially used by Elena Danescu for the drafting of a detailed analytical study with the same title and structure as the corpus and forming an integral part of it. The study is published both in full and in extended chapters, corresponding to the structure of the published resources (see 3).
This study does not claim to be exhaustive but offers a ‘rereading’, a new interpretation of the Werner Report by means of an in-depth analysis of previously unpublished documents. It traces the context and historical background in which the report was drafted and examines the work of the Werner Committee, highlighting the impact of the Werner Plan on the path towards Economic and Monetary Union.
Given the complex structure of both the corpus and the analytical study, and the fact that each section (which has its own series of documents) is designed to stand on its own and to be used independently from the rest of the corpus, there will inevitably be some repetition. This is intentional, the aim being to provide users with a thorough understanding of the subject.
We have opted for a historiographical approach that best showcases the original documents selected. For this reason we have also primarily chosen French-language material, which is more comprehensive and relevant, as well as the accounts of those who actually took part in the events covered (these are mostly in French, English, German and Italian). The memoirs of Pierre Werner, 10 as well as his other published writings, have given us his own view of events.
All the documents cited in the study are included in the digital research corpus and can be consulted at www.cvce.eu. To make the most of the advantages offered by digital publishing, hyperlinks have been inserted into the text to provide direct access to the documents cited.
2.3 Selection criteria
Given our multidisciplinary approach, several criteria governed the collection, selection, treatment and exploitation of the sources in the digital research corpus on the 1970 Werner Report.
In order to provide the academic community with new resources on the Werner Report, enriching the existing documentation on this subject, we chose to abide by the following guidelines:
Chronology. The subject in question, the Werner Report, led us to examine the period 1968–1974, with a particular focus on the year 1970. But for reasons of consistency and historical context, the analysis also includes elements before and after the period in which the Werner Report was drafted (from 1945 to the present day).
Value and relevance of sources. The material was selected with strict objectivity and with the overriding aim of providing the research community with a series of documents that would shed light as fully as possible on the debates that preceded and accompanied the preparation, adoption and implementation of the Werner Report. The choice of sources does not deliberately favour any particular legal, economic or historiographical doctrine or school of thought. On the contrary, the proposed selection aims to represent as broad a range of views — in ideological, geographical and linguistic terms — as possible. The documents were selected for their historical, political, legal or economic value for members of the research community with an interest in this period of European integration in general and in the Werner Report in particular.
Originality (of the sources and/or the ideas contained in them). Several sources, such as the documents from the Pierre Werner family archives and the oral accounts recorded by the CVCE, as well as some founding texts on the European integration process, are important in heritage terms because they have never previously been published. Current research issues were considered, with the accent being placed on recent historiographical methodology. Various documents geared towards educational needs, such as illustrative tables, maps and diagrams, were also created.
A balanced range of sources, in terms of both provenance (private and public, institutional and non-institutional archives from Luxembourg and abroad) and type (written documents, images, photos, sound and video archives, etc.). All the documents selected are presented in full or as long extracts.
Intellectual property concerns. All these documents are published by the CVCE, with a precise indication of their source and an explanatory caption to set them in context. The terms and conditions of their reproduction and publication have been thoroughly analysed, and authorisations from the right holders have been secured in accordance with intellectual property legislation.
Electronic accessibility (digitisation, formatting of texts, etc.), given the digital nature of the corpus and the digital publication platform at www.cvce.eu.
3. Structure of the digital research corpus
The digital research corpus is divided into six main chapters, each of which contains several sections.
Each chapter and section contains an analytical text and a comprehensive collection of relevant sources comprising a variety of elements such as texts, images, photos, and audio and video material. The chapters and sections and the analysis contained within them do not claim to be exhaustive. Each chapter in the corpus can stand on its own and has a self-contained logic in terms of both sources and explanations.
The analytical study aims to interpret and shed light on certain sources and is itself a source and an integral part of the digital research corpus.
4. Bibliography and annexes
The corpus also includes other original academic documents written by Elena Danescu:
an analysis of all the successive meetings 13 of the Werner Group — plenary sessions and expert consultations — giving details of the issue at hand and the debates, points of disagreement and negotiations;
a selection of speeches, lectures, addresses, public statements and other important texts by Pierre Werner 14 on the European integration process and on economic and monetary questions, including previously unpublished material;
an extensive bibliography of works by Pierre Werner and works about Pierre Werner and the Werner Plan; 15
a chronology from the 1950s onwards on Pierre Werner and monetary Europe, 16 highlighting the various stages of monetary integration and the role of Luxembourg and its eminent figures in the European integration process.
3 See Palmer, Carole L., ‘Thematic Research Collections’, in Schreibman, Susan; Unsworth, John, A companion to Digital Humanities, undated. Source: http://www.digitalhumanities.org/companion. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
See also Unsworth, John, Scholarly Primitives: what methods do humanities researchers have in common, and how might our tools reflect this? London, 2000. Source: http://www3.isrl.illinois.edu/~unsworth/Kings.5-00/primitives.html. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
4 See the section ‘Pierre Werner, a European vocation’, which contains an analytical text and a collection of sources relating to this subject, published at www.cvce.eu. See also Danescu, Elena, ‘Le Comité Werner: nouvelles archives’, in Histoire, économie et société. La revue d’histoire économique et sociale du XVIe au XXe siècle, No 4/2011, ISSN: 0752-5702, Armand Colin, Paris. Source: http://www.cairn.info/revue-histoire-economie-et-societe-2011-4.htm. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
5 The video recording and proceedings of the conference are available at www.cvce.eu. See also Pierre Werner et l’Europe. Actes de la présentation officielle du projet de recherche du CVCE et de la conférence de Jean-Claude Juncker, Premier ministre, président de l’Eurogroupe, ISBN 978-99959-708-0-2, CVCE, Luxembourg, June 2011.
6 In addition to the purely academic value of this undertaking, the project will serve to emphasise the relevance of some of the questions raised and the answers put forward at the time — particularly with regard to the development of the Werner Plan — in the light of the current monetary and financial crisis. In other words, the project will highlight the role that past experience can play in building the united Europe of the future.
9 See the section Oral accounts of Pierre Werner recorded by the CVCE.
10 Werner, Pierre, Itinéraires luxembourgeois et européens. Évolutions et souvenirs: 1945–1985, 2 volumes, Éditions Saint-Paul, Luxembourg, 1992
11 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, List of documents and references cited in the digital research corpus ‘A rereading of the Werner Report of 8 October 1970 in the light of the Pierre Werner family archives’. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
12 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, Index of key figures consulted for the digital research corpus ‘A rereading of the Werner Report of 8 October 1970 in the light of the Pierre Werner family archives’. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
13 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, Summary of the Werner Committee’s schedule and the main issues addressed (6 March 1970–22 March 1971). (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
14 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, Bibliography of works by Pierre Werner consulted for the digital research corpus ‘A rereading of the Werner Report of 8 October 1970 in the light of the Pierre Werner family archives’. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
15 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, General bibliography of works consulted for the digital research corpus ‘A rereading of the Werner Report of 8 October 1970 in the light of the Pierre Werner family archives’. (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)
16 See Danescu, Elena Rodica, Pierre Werner and monetary Europe — Chronology (1948–1974). (Document consulted on 10 October 2012.)