The first problem with the EU is that, though it is called a union, it isn’t really one. The EU is essentially an economic club; not a state.
Brexit has highlighted the key challenges that the EU faces. The first challenge concerns a widespread overestimation of the EU’s role. This is due to its perception as a supra-national state, which it certainly is not.
The EU is also facing the challenge posed by the return of the nation-state as the most popular model of socio-political organization across the globe.
Right now all supra-national and/or international organizations, from the United Nations to NATO, are regarded with suspicion, if not outright hostility, not only in Europe but also throughout the world.
With the Brexit saga’s denouement still uncertain, the European Union would do well to re-examine its performance as a daring experience in socio-political engineering on a grand scale.