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About this book

Europeanization has become a key topic in analysis of the politics of the new Europe. This broad-ranging new text focuses centrally on the impact of the EU on its member states but also on the way in which states 'up-load' their policy priorities to the European level.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Abstract
Since the beginning of the European integration process in the 1950s, scholars have debated the causes and future development of such institutional innovations as the relative autonomy of the European Commission, the development of the European Parliament, and the evolution of EU law through the actions of the European Court of Justice (ECJ). Certain key events or milestones contributed to the focus on European-level developments, from the 1966 ‘empty chair’ political crisis, to the re-launch of the integration process in 1986 with the Single European Act (SEA), to the dramatic halt to institutional ‘deepening’ as a result of the French and Dutch referendums on the EU Constitutional Treaty in 2005. Throughout most of this period, scholarly, professional and even public attention, whatever the motivation, sought to explain as well as react to the emergence of this unprecedented level of supranational governance. However, from the mid-1990s, attention slowly began to focus on an as yet unexplored dimension of European integration, namely the member states themselves.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 1. Europeanization: Conceptual Developments and a Framework for Analysis

Abstract
As the Introduction made clear, the concept of Europeanization has established itself in the firmament of European Union studies. This chapter presents the main conceptual developments and analytical tool-kit as it has evolved up to the present. These concerns are necessary to address in order to more effectively understand the evidence of Europeanization that is investigated in each of the subsequent chapters. In this regard, each of these chapters refers back to the main contours of the theoretical framework that is discussed in this chapter.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 2. National Executives

Abstract
Europeanization and institutional change, particularly of the national executive, has potentially several ramifications for the relationship between the EU and its member states. First, national executives are the constitutional ‘gate-keeper’ between the EU and domestic policy implementation. Any changes in the operation of the national executive have potential consequences for the uploading of national preferences as well as the implementation of EU legislation, whether measured according to rates of compliance or to other criteria. Second, change inside the national executive may alter the relations between it and other national governmental institutions. Third, adaptation by the national executive to the logic of EU policy-making may have an impact on democratic procedures of accountability and representation. With these concerns in mind, this chapter applies the Europeanization research approach to the polity dimension, assessing the extent to which changes in the national executive can be traced to the EU.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 3. National Parliaments

Abstract
Europeanization and institutional change regarding national parliaments very quickly bring into centre stage the issue of how the EU may impact the quality of democracy — or at least the efficacy of national parliamentary procedures in relation to representation and accountability. The degree to which executive—legislative relations have altered was briefly treated in the previous chapter. This present chapter takes a much more direct focus and investigates institutional and behavioural change by national parliaments in order to maintain some part of national government input in EU policy-making; put another way, this chapter evaluates the steps taken by parliaments to keep themselves ‘in the loop’ as regards EU matters. Such efforts may be linked with normative concerns about representation, especially when one considers that elections to national parliaments have virtually no ‘EU’ content, and yet it is the national parliament that votes on legislation in which the national executive may have been involved in fashioning.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 4. Centre-Regional Relations

Abstract
One of the critical issues linked to the debate over the Europeanization phenomenon is the extent to which EU-induced domestic change is reshaping the state (or state structures). Chapters 2 and 3 have considered national governmental institutions, but these institutions also have relations with a sub-national level of government, especially national executives. Although state territorial frameworks differ from member state to member state, if the EU does in fact exercise a particular influence on the relationship between national and sub-national actors, and if there is any discernible pattern to these changes, then a contribution will have been made to the broader issue of European state evolution. The strengthening or weakening of one or the other level, or other qualitative changes in relations, for example the nature of decision-making over resource allocation or input into national positions vis-à-vis EU policy, are examples indicative of Europeanization.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 5. National Courts

Abstract
National parliaments were found to have experienced an indirect type of pressure from the EU leading to modest internal organizational change and, more importantly, a further justifying factor for the de-parliamentarization thesis. As a national institution of government, parliaments do not formally interact at the EU level in any of the main formats of decision- or policy-making, unlike national executives that are present in the Council of Ministers, and therefore intimately as well as formally involved in EU dynamics. National courts, unlike executives, are not ‘present’ in EU institutions, but unlike parliaments they are much more intimately linked to EU decision-making dynamics through their relationship with the European Court of Justice.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 6. Political Parties

Abstract
Searching for evidence of Europeanization and change in the dimension of politics would seem, at first sight, to be a rather straightforward undertaking. After all, high-profile events such as the French and Dutch referendums that sank the EU Constitutional Treaty in 2005 suggest a popular falling out with European integration. In some EU member states, anti-EU parties and public attitudes have become permanent features of national party systems, for example in the United Kingdom, Denmark and the Czech Republic, to name a few. However, as the EU ‘is run by party politicians’ (Hix and Lord, 1997: 1) and member state governments can also be described as party government (Blondel and Cotta, 2000), the centrality of political parties in the context of Europeanization and political change should be significant. All chapters of this book have until now demonstrated evidence of Europeanization in national governmental institutions, in other words in the structure and processes of national political systems. If this finding is correct, and political parties are instrumental actors at both the domestic and European levels, then one can infer that parties themselves must have experienced some degree of change intrinsic to their organization and/or activities.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 7. Interest Groups and Social Movements

Abstract
Collective action in EU member states is reflected in the very fabric or structure of domestic policy-making (interest group activity) and may promote outsider groups’ entry into this process or challenge its very legitimacy (social movement mobilization). In either case, this non-electoral political activity involves a more self-directed form of political participation than the more passive act of voting for parties at periodic elections. One of the central aims of either actor is to promote the interests of its members, and in some cases the promotion of ‘public goods’, so if there is an impact on organization and strategy that impinges on the attainment of these goals, then Europeanization may have positive as well as negative consequences. As Chapter 8 on Policies will demonstrate, a good portion of domestic policy-making is interwoven into the EU policy-making process, so the question of access to this nexus is crucial for organized groups, and issues of resources and long-standing relationships, become important factors for analysis.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 8. National Policy

Abstract
The chapters up to this point covering Europeanization and institutional change have illustrated, in the case of the pre-2004 member states, widespread but modest degrees of change (although the changes in relations between national institutions may have longer-term impacts). In the realm of Europeanization and policy change, the question of state evolution again comes to the fore, as the spectrum of change runs from modest adjustments of individual policies to pressure on national policy styles. In this regard, Europeanization and policy change implicates private actors as well as public institutions and modes of participation, and can potentially stimulate public reaction to changes in policy direction, especially in economic policy. Where leadership in policy change is located, and how this has changed over time is also a feature of the impact of the EU in domestic policy domains and policy-making. Chapter 9 will specifically treat the classically inter-governmental area of foreign policy. This chapter casts a wider net over the myriad ways in which the EU, probably in its most characteristic fashion of intensively engaging member states on a continuous basis, hits domestic ‘ways of doing things’.
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 9. Foreign Policy

Abstract
An underlying premise of this book is that the mechanisms of change, that is, the specific ways in which EU influence may cause or trigger a response in terms of institutional or policy change, involves some form of relationship between a domestic actor or institution and the EU. Whether this relationship is of a hierarchical nature as in the case of ‘hard’ EU policy or where the EU itself represents a political opportunity structure for domestic actors, there is some evidence of a causal link. In Chapter 8, a particular dimension of EU—domestic relations in the area of ‘soft’ policy was discussed, where the hierarchical arrangement was replaced with a member state-led process such as the Open Method of Coordination (OMC). When one turns to the area of national foreign policy (and security policy), the last bastion of national sovereignty occupies centre stage of analysis, and it is therefore understandable that member states have been most reluctant to cede any policy authority to the Commission in this area (at least most member states).
Robert Ladrech

Chapter 10. Conclusion

Abstract
Membership in the European Union implies costs as well as benefits, and all member governments believe the benefits outweigh the costs. Benefits can vary from the quite narrow, such as a particular project involving EU Structural and Development Funds, to more profound, such as contributing to the stabilization and democratization of post-communist regimes. By costs we do not simply mean the revenue transfer to the EU budget that has sometimes set the scene for budget rebate arguments during European Council summits, but also the trade-offs in autonomous policy development, especially in the area of the Single Market. But the notion of cost—benefit analysis to measure the utility of membership in the EU completely misses another dimension, which is the domestic adjustment or adaptation of political and institutional practices, conventions, understandings, or ‘ways of doing things’ (Radaelli, 2003), to the policy and practices of the EU, labelled as Europeanization throughout this book. However, as much as we have documented (and put into an explanatory framework) the changes that membership in the EU has instigated in the member states, it nevertheless remains the fact that Europeanization has not produced any seismic shifts in the operation of national policy-making and institutions.
Robert Ladrech
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