The Dynamics of Change in EU Governance
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The Dynamics of Change in EU Governance

  • Studies in EU Reform and Enlargement series

Edited by Udo Diedrichs, Wulf Reiners and Wolfgang Wessels

This book brings together the research of different academic disciplines to explore the recent transformation of governance in the European Union. The emergence, execution and evolution of new modes of EU governance across several policy fields – encompassing all three former pillars of the European Union – are mapped, analysed and evaluated. In particular, the contributors focus on the ways in which these innovative mechanisms and practices relate to ‘old’ methods of governance and what their implications are for both the effectiveness and efficiency of policy-making. Particular attention is devoted to the impact of the Lisbon Treaty on the shape of EU governance. Conclusions are drawn in the form of an integrated framework that explores the dynamics and differentiation of EU governance.
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Chapter 5: Social Policy and Environmental Policy: Comparing Modes of Governance

Oliver Treib, Holger Bähr and Gerda Falkner

Extract

5. Social policy and environmental policy: comparing modes of governance Oliver Treib, Holger Bähr and Gerda Falkner INTRODUCTION 1 The European Union (EU) is a highly sectorized polity. The different policy areas are marked by a wide variety of legislative procedures, constellations of actors and policy instruments. To grasp the logic of policymaking in the EU, we thus need a toolkit to understand the differences and similarities between policy areas. The concepts of governance and modes of governance are useful instruments for arriving at this understanding. In this chapter, we use these conceptual tools to analyse the emergence and evolution of modes of governance in EU social policy and EU environmental policy. We use the term ‘governance’ in a broad sense as structures of societal coordination and control in order to encompass both developments in the policy areas concerned and differences between the two policy areas within one concept. However, a broad conception of governance covering the structures of the whole process of policy-making adds to the complexity and easily loses the organizing and structuring function of the concept. We therefore disentangle the concept into three dimensions: (1) the way in which societal interests are incorporated into the initiation, formulation and adoption of policies (interest intermediation); (2) the institutional rules determining who is entitled to take part in decision-making and how decisions are taken (modes of interaction); and (3) the way in which agreed policy objectives are implemented (policy instruments). The two policy areas have been chosen for analytical...

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