On a range of structural and ideological issues Russia and Europe are increasingly mutually dependent, as in the energy sector, as well as in security matters and a number of other issues, but this has not generated ‘interdependence’ – the term popular from the 1970s to denote a qualitative transformation of the relationship, as described by Keohane and Nye and others. The paper asks why this has been the case, providing historical and theoretical context, but above all it looks at some of the ideas now advanced that could transcend the present impasse. An ‘international regime’ is emerging in response to Russian aspirations for some sort of ‘greater European’ community, the European Union’s complex pattern of ‘external governance’, and the need to integrate third parties (notably Turkey) into an extended network of relations that falls short of full-scale accession but gives form to aspirations for pan-European unity.

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