The Signals Among the Noise That Will Indicate France’s Exit from the European Union – Summary

This last post will summarize my research project, as well as see whether I achieved my research goals.

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The Signals Among the Noise That Will Indicate France’s Exit from the European Union – Part 3

Part 3: Analytic Biases

Throughout my research, I realized that I searched for more information that would confirm that France will not move towards a referendum to withdraw from the European Union. I did not think that it could happen because of what most of my family in France has been saying: that Frexit is over, that Macron is going to change France and the EU. Confirmation bias has plagued my methodology and research for factors that could affect nationalist populist sentiment in France. Availability bias was also present, as I had recently traveled to France for the duration of the summer; it was easily called to mind the anti-Le Pen sentiment and the hope for Macron. I addressed these biases with a pre-mortem analysis, imagining a future in which France has a referendum in the near future. Moving backwards from this imaginary future, several events could lead up to this point. Economic crises, whether in the Eurozone or worldwide, could easily drive up concerns of French citizens and the government about the EU. A lot of this depends on reforms in France and reforms in the EU, and whether the current governments are equipped to handle these reforms. I didn’t put much focus on the Greek Eurozone Crisis or the more recent crisis in Italy (Stratfor). These recent crises, and any upcoming economic crises, can undermine efforts to keep France in the EU and the EU together.

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The Signals Among the Noise That Will Indicate France’s Exit from the European Union – Part 2

I used an analysis of competing hypotheses (ACH) to collect and analyze data regarding a French exit from the European Union. An ACH allows me overcome confirmation bias and identify assumptions, as well as establish a way to evaluate information as it comes in. I will first list and describe the factors used in the ACH, determining with which hypotheses they are consistent. Then, I will detail which factors are more important than others, as well as the reasoning behind the weightings of those factors. ‘C’ means ‘Consistent’ and ‘I’ represents ‘Inconsistent.’ The number of C’s dictate the strength of the factor.

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The Signals Among the Noise That Will Indicate France’s Exit from the European Union – Part 1

Even with the victory of centrist Emmanuel Macron, the discussion of Frexit is still relevant. The National Front’s (FN) loss in the 2017 election does not mean that the movement for a French withdrawal from the European Union (EU) is no longer possible. The following discussion will touch upon the factors that could lead a country the leave the EU.
First, I will examine the Brexit referendum and the 2016 United States Presidential Election; these events showcase the rise of nationalism and populism. The Brexit decision is also the first time a country chose to withdraw from the European Union, excluding former territories that had gained independence from their European counterparts. Analyzing Brexit will allow me to see what was going on in a country as the people contemplated whether to leave or remain in the EU. This is, in a way, reasoning from the past; however, I recognize that France, the United Kingdom, and the United States are all different countries and could have different factors accounting for nationalists and populists.

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