Digital research corpus

The original treaties on which the European Coal and Steel Community (1951), then the European Economic Community and European Atomic Energy Community (1957) were based have been subject to around 30 revisions, some limited in scope and others more significant.But over time, these amendments have become a more risky prospect: the number of Member States has grown, the way in which the reforms are approved (most often by unanimity) has been a source of infamous political imbroglios, and citizens have become less tolerant of decisions that are all too often taken behind closed doors in Brussels.Given these difficulties, the procedures for revising the treaties have gradually developed to enable the integration process to continue. Changes have included greater involvement of parliamentary representatives via the convening of a Convention, the development of simplified revision procedures and the internationalisation of the development of EU Law (e.g. the Treaty establishing the European Stability Mechanism).

The digital research corpus ‘The treaties of the European Union: texts, preparatory work and personal accounts' aims to analyse these changes to the treaties and to the procedures for revising the treaties by addressing the following three questions: Why revise a treaty? How was this treaty negotiated and ratified? Why this treaty?


The corpus does not aim to answer these questions, but to provide research materials and tools for researchers in contemporary history, law or political science who are interested in the subject. The corpus will contain a series of primary sources (treaties, draft treaties, minutes from intergovernmental conferences, etc.) and secondary sources (recorded accounts and extracts from the memoirs of those involved in negotiations, press articles, academic articles, cartoons, diagrams, etc.). Research questions are always multidimensional, and the corpus will reflect this by offering a wide selection of varied documents from several sources and in several languages. The consultation of this material will be facilitated by a dedicated search engine, the option of compiling personal albums of documents, etc.

Following the positive opinion delivered by the peer review committee on 10 December 2013, the corpus is now available on the CVCE site here.


Project manager: Frédéric Allemand (frederic [point] allemand [at] cvce [point] eu)