Edited by Maria João Rodrigues
Chapter 19: Assessing the Implications of the Lisbon Treaty for the Lisbon Agenda
Mario Telò 19.1 AN INSTITUTIONAL FRAMEWORK Does the ‘Lisbon Strategy’ need the support of a consistent institutional framework? In other words, do institutions matter? This is a rhetorical question, since from the outset nothing has existed in an institutional construction like the European Union (EU) without a consistent legal basis. Treaties provide values, allow competences to be shared between the constituent entities and the EU, and establish governance procedures. However, there are two alternative views about the European public sphere: one, supported by Rodrigues and others, is that consistent new Treaty provisions should underpin the Lisbon Strategy; the other, functionalist view emphasizes EU policies as independent from EU polity reform. On this view, the Lisbon Agenda – a practical and pragmatic process that is part of a ‘delivering Europe’ – is rhetorically opposed to prioritizing EU Treaty reform. The functionalist understanding of the Lisbon Strategy has deep roots in the history of European cooperation, but also suﬀers from some internal contradictions. What are the arguments in favour of the so-called functionalist approach? One argument can be called that of the ‘original sin’. During the ﬁrst semester of the year 2000, diﬀerent people and ministers under the Portuguese presidency managed the Lisbon Strategy and the process of Treaty reform (notably, the Intergovernmental Conference in preparation of the Nice Treaty). The subsequent French presidency also failed to address both issues together, and entirely ignored the institutional implications of the Lisbon Strategy, so that the Treaty of Nice of December 2000 did not...
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