This article puts forward the argument that the EU should be understood not as a nation-state in the making but as a new type of polity that could offer a model of global governance. It uses the example of the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) to illustrate the argument. It suggests that CSDP is designed to make a contribution to global security rather than to protect borders using military force, as in the case of classic nation-states. It proposes that CSDP should be explicitly based on the concept of human security and should acquire human security capabilities that include both military and civilians operating according to human security principles in a way that is more like law enforcement than fighting wars. To achieve this, the CSDP would require stronger political backing and this would mean increasing the representativeness and accountability of the EU. By the same token, an effective CSDP would increase the legitimacy of the EU.
The EU should explicitly adopt the concept of human security as a basis for external security policy both at the level of high and low politics.
CSDP should be greatly strengthened with more resources devoted to the kind of military and civilian capabilities required for human security missions.
New mechanisms, including perhaps a pan-European election for a single president of the Commission and Council should be introduced in order to increase the accountability and deliberative engagement of the Union.