Informal Governance in the European Union

Informal Governance in the European Union

Edited by Thomas Christiansen and Simona Piattoni

This book addresses an issue of paramount importance concerning the politics of the European Union: aspects of governance and policy making in the EU that are labelled ‘informal’. Much of the literature on the EU focuses on the formal facets of EU politics, but uniquely, the subject matter within this book deals with informal aspects such as: the role of personal relationships, the presence of non-hierarchical policy-networks and non-institutional channels of interest representation, and the relevance of the unwritten rules and routines which govern these aspects of EU politics.

Chapter 10: Informal governance in the Common Agricultural Policy

Christilla Roederer-Rynning

Subjects: law - academic, european law, politics and public policy, european politics and policy, regulation and governance

Extract

Christilla Roederer-Rynning INTRODUCTION The purpose of this chapter is to examine how formal and informal aspects of governance have shaped the development of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) since the late 1950s. The task entails determining the role of these factors not only in the institutionalization of the CAP in the 1960s, but also in the slow re-institutionalization of this policy along new lines in the 1990s.1 A key premise of this study is that European farm politics underwent an ‘agrarian turn’ in the 1960s. It is arresting that the CAP today conjures up all the flaws of an anachronistically productivist project, for the early formulations of the CAP revealed the concern of its architects to include a variety of societal interests and to use structural policy as a tool of modernization. The ‘incongruous’ character (Fennell 1997, p. 20), until not so long ago, of the injunctions of early European policy-makers is a good indicator of this ‘agrarian turn’. An attentive reading of the Treaty of Rome of 1957 and of the proceedings of the Stresa Conference in June 1958 suggests that early Europeanists regarded agriculture ‘as an integral part of the economy and as an essential factor in social life’,2 urged their successors to draw consumer concerns into farm policy-making3, and even recommended a generous endowment of the structural dimension of agricultural policy.4 Although the terminology was often evasive and did not coalesce into a coherent vision, it clearly roomed a variety of projects besides the framework which...

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