Danubius International Conferences, 13th International Conference The Danube - Axis of European Identity

The Danube, Axis or Geopolitical Fault?

Gheorghe Felea
Last modified: 2023-06-20


The communication approaches the issue of the “Danube” from a spatial perspective, as a relationship between potential, projection and organization, in a context of power that is constantly evolving. Our analysis tries to answer a series of questions, crystallized around several sub-themes, through which we hope to reveal the continuities and discontinuities induced by the Danube in the natural and anthropic space it crosses and, conversely, those imposed by this space on the route the great river.

Currently, the globalization process, based on the fierce competition between the social and economic performances of human communities, deepens the territorial gaps, making the axes and nodal regions real sips of resources and pools of prosperity, and the marginal ones, real white spots. To what extent does the natural corridor of the Danube - used for millennia as an axis for the movement of peoples, for cultural contacts, for economic exchanges, but also for the clash of power interests - integrate with the new trends? Is the Danube an increasingly coherent and stronger demo-economic axis in the context of European integration? Or is it just a corridor in which the natural discontinuities and those imposed by the organization of the political space are amplified, tending to turn into faults with unpredictable evolutions?! How are the economic policies and regional development strategies of each of the states bordering the Danube corridor articulated? What chances does Romania have to value its status as a Danube country in the relationship with the surrounding states? Is a unitary policy for harnessing the potential of the Danube starting to shape or not? What could be the power centers today able to promote a possible “Danube project” and what would be the alternative options able to “distract the attention” and direct the resources of these centers to other strategic directions?

These are the questions that our paper will answer, so that, subsequently, we will continue and systematize our reflections, in another context, that of the Danube basin, as an integral part of the European Union.