Chapter 1: Trial and error: Policy experiments, failures and innovations in Central and Eastern Europe
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In this introductory chapter to the volume, the authors examine on the one hand the concepts of policy transfer and policy diffusion and, on the other, the concept of policy failure and success within the general context of Europeanization in Central and Eastern Europe. They invite contributors to address two main sets of questions: To what degree was the policy/institution/idea under consideration transferred intact or modified? And did the resulting policy or institution come to be viewed as a success or failure, or somewhere in between? The chapters that follow highlight that policy ‘transfer’ processes are often non-linear and fuzzy and sometimes counter-intuitive, and point to the central importance of the views, interests and constellations of the domestic actors that filter and interpret international influences. In this sense, the CEE experience in the years since accession is as much about active and sometimes strategic policy imports and policy distortion and perhaps less about simple receipt and incorporation of external models.

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