European governance ranks high on the present research agenda on Europe and has attracted considerable attention in public debate in the course of the past decade. This book takes a special approach as it highlights the multi-faceted interconnectedness of EU and national governance that comes with public policy making in the European space. The volume is a well chosen selection from the research of leading European scholars. These scholars provide an insight into the current debate on European governance by using state-of-the art, theory-orientated empirical research. The individual chapters give evidence of the functioning and the deficiencies of the penetrated system of governance that has emerged within the European Union. The spreading of competence across different levels and multiple arenas has created a dense and complex network of trans-national negotiations, shifting attention and resources from the national to the European space. European governance puts national governments under considerable pressure to live up to the competing demands of efficient performance and democratic accountability.
Though member-states all face the same challenge, they have responded with different kinds of strategies. EU involvement has contributed to the restructuring of the relationship between the legislative and the executive and touches upon the equilibrium between the political and the economic sphere. It influences the interactions between political actors on the one hand and societal actors and the public on the other. The contributions highlight the diverse mechanisms which link EU and national governance and demonstrate the constraints but also the readiness and capacity of political bodies to adapt to demands from their environment. While the volume documents the sensitivity and vulnerability which is associated with interdependent governance, it also gives evidence of learning processes and successful adjustment which is achieved by developing a differentiated and flexible intitutional setting and which allows for further integration.
Apart from this more functional view, individual chapters look at the penetrated system of European governance from a normative perspective and investigate the prospect of improving parliamentary accountability and the formation of a European public space.
Release date NZ
October 9th, 2003
Edited by Beate Kohler-Koch
Country of Publication
10 figures, 6 tables
Oxford University Press
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