Revista de ciencia política (Santiago)
versión On-line ISSN 0718-090X
SERRANO, LORENA OYARZÚN. On the Nature of Regional Integration: Theories and Discussions. Rev. cienc. polít. (Santiago) [online]. 2008, vol.28, n.2, pp. 95-113. ISSN 0718-090X. doi: 10.4067/S0718-090X2008000200004.
A permanent feature of studies on regional integration is the difficulty of defining the dependent variable (integration) and the application -often simultaneously- of analytical tools from various approaches and theories of social sciences to attempt to overcome this problem. In this paper I will discuss the issue from an International Relations perspective, focusing on the major debates surrounding regional integration, highlighting their particularities and typologies. In the first part I will examine the connection between regionalism and integration and subsequently I will explore the main theories linked to the issue in order to make generalizations. Finally, and based on neofunctionalist approaches I will present a definition of regional integration that revitalizes the notion of transfer loyalties, a key idea that permits the distinction of this concept from other similar ones.
Palabras clave : Regionalism; regional integration; theories of integration; transfer of loyalties; supranationality.