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Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

Too big to run? Analysing the impact of enlargement on the speed of EU decision-making,... - 0 views

  • Too big to run? Analysing the impact of enlargement on the speed of EU decision-making

    1. Robin Hertz
      1. ETH Zürich, Switzerland, robin.hertz@eup.gess.ethz.ch
    1. Dirk Leuffen
      1. University of Konstanz, Germany

    Abstract

    The article analyses how enlargements affect the speed of European Union (EU) decision-making. In line with rationalist theories of group choice, we argue that enlargements increase the costs of organizing decisions, i.e. transaction costs. Increasing transaction costs, in turn, slow down EU law-making. We test this theory by estimating Cox regression models that incorporate time-varying covariates on all directives, regulations and decisions submitted by the European Commission between 1976 and 2006. In contrast to previous analyses, we show that an increase in group size indeed slows down EU law-making.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

Wasserfallen (2010): The judiciary as legislator? How the European Court of Justice sha... - 0 views

  • The question of whether, and if so, how the European Court of Justice influences European integration has been a matter of long-standing academic dispute. Several more recent empirical studies have shown that the Court influences the integration path, but scholars have also documented that member states can successfully limit the practical relevance of activist Court decisions. Drawing on this literature, this paper argues that the Court eventually impacts integration in salient policy fields effectively when the legislator incorporates judicial considerations in the policy-making process. The theoretical section conceptualizes the leverage of the Court in the legislation process and the empirical section elucidates how the judiciary shaped legislation in the development of exchange students' social rights. Findings show that the Court can successfully promote distinct legislative outcomes.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

14.10.10: EU states and MEPs clash over international talks - 0 views

  • Member states are considering taking the EU Parliament to court if it does not back down on demands for new powers on EU foreign policy and international agreements, EUobserver has learnt.

    Ambassadors representing member states at a meeting in Brussels on Wednesday (13 October) signaled their discontent over an inter-institutional agreement between the European Commission and the EU legislature which may give fresh powers to euro-deputies, especially when it comes to international negotiations on behalf of the EU.

  • The draft report, according to an analysis by the council of ministers' legal services, could lead to a stand-off between EU institutions if adopted as such next week in Strasbourg.

    "The court option is not off the table," one EU source said.

    Ambassadors will come back to the matter in their meeting next Wednesday, following the MEP's vote in the plenary.

    The crux of the matter is to what extent MEPs can be part of EU delegations to multilateral and bilateral meetings and negotiations with other countries. According to the draft, the Parliament wants to have its representatives guaranteed participation in all multilateral, but also bilateral agreements "of particular political importance" - for instance on trade or fisheries.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

13.10.10: MEPs to oversee details of Ashton spending - 0 views

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    The European Parliament has won the right to look into the nitty gritty of spending in foreign delegations in the EU's new diplomatic service amid mild alarm over rising costs.
    The provisional agreement was put together at an informal meeting between MEPs, EU officials and member states on Monday (11 October) and represents an easing of tensions between the assembly and Catherine Ashton's office after a dispute over diplomatic appointments last week.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

National interests creating tension in EU commission - 0 views

  • A group of EU commissioners from smaller member states is growing increasingly angry with a number of their larger-state colleagues, perceiving their actions as being driven by national interests rather than the greater European good.

    "We have sworn in front of the European Court not to work for our national governments back home and I am taking it seriously," a frustrated commissioner from a smaller EU country said in an off-the-record conversation with EUobserver last week.

  • "The bigger the EU becomes the more it becomes intergovernmental and the more the commission is regarded as an executive secretariat for the council," says Belgian MEP Derk Jan Eppink, a member of the European Conservatives and Reformists group in parliament.

    Author of Life of a European Mandarin – Inside the Commission, Mr Eppink previously worked in the cabinets of former commissioner Frits Bolkestein and subsequently that of Siim Kallas.

    "Commissioners from larger member states frequently feel they have to produce the goods for their governments back home, while those from smaller countries realise they don't have the capacity to do this," he said, pointing to former commissioner Gunter Verheugen's willingness to stand up for German industry.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

07.09.10: The Hidden Agenda of the State of the European Union Debate - 0 views

  • I am very much interested in the (hidden) institutional framework of this debate. It is not uncommon for the Commission president to outline his legislative program before the European Parliament, as Andrew J. Burgess has pointed out. However, the new format appears similar to the US State of the Union address delivered by the President. Does this mean that Barroso sees himself as the head of state of the EU? Hardly the case, but there is some symbolic value in this endeavour.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

25.07.10: Will New Diplomatic Service Help EU To Speak With One Voice? - 0 views

  • The European Union is just months away from launching a new unified diplomatic service. But any hopes that the new structure will bring greater focus and effectiveness to the bloc's foreign policy are probably premature, analysts say.

    The European External Action Service (EEAS), whose creation was a key provision of last year's Lisbon Treaty, is expected to be fully operational on January 1. It eventually will be staffed with thousands of diplomats in Brussels and in EU missions around the world.
  • But while the new diplomatic corps may change the way the EU executes its foreign policy, it will not change the way the bloc's foreign policy is formulated. Foreign affairs within the bloc, observers say, will remain very much the prerogative of member states' national governments.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

Stone Sweet (20109. The European Court of Justice and the judicialization of EU governance - 2 views

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    This Living Reviews article evaluates the most important strains of social science research on the impact of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on integration, EU-level policymaking, and national legal orders. Section 2 defines the concepts of judicialization and governance, and discusses how they are related. As the article demonstrates, the "constitutionalization of the EU," and its effect on EU governance, is one of the most complex and dramatic examples of judicialization in world history. Section 3 discusses the institutional determinants of judicial authority in the EU in light of delegation theory. The European Court, a Trustee of the Treaty system rather than a simple Agent of the Member States, operates in an unusually broad zone of discretion, a situation the Court has exploited in its efforts to enhance the effectiveness of EU law. Section 4 focuses on the extraordinary impact of the European Court of Justice, and of the legal system it manages, on the overall course of market and political integration. Section 5 provides an overview of the process through which the ECJ's case law - its jurisprudence - influences the decision-making of non-judicial EU organs and officials. Section 6 considers the role of the ECJ and the national courts in monitoring and enforcing Member State compliance with EU law, a task that has provoked a steady Europeanization of national law and policymaking.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

Trondal/Bernau (2010): An Emergent European Executive Order - 0 views

  • This book poses two pertinent questions: First, if a European executive order is emerging, how can we empirically see it? Second, if a European executive order is emerging, how can we explain everyday decision-making processes within it? The goal of this book is two-fold: First, it identifies key institutional components of an emergent European executive order. The nucleus of this order is the European Commission. The Commission, however, is increasingly supplemented by a mushrooming parallel administration of EU-level agencies and EU committees. This book provides fresh empirical survey and interview data on the everyday decision-making behaviour, role perceptions, and identities among European civil servants who participate within these institutions. Secondly, this book claims and empirically substantiates that an emergent European executive order is a compound executive order balancing a limited set of key decision-making dynamics. One message of this book is that an emergent European executive order consists of a compound set of supranational, departmental, epistemic, and intergovernmental decision-making dynamics. Arguably, a compound European executive order transforms the inherent Westphalian order to the extent that intergovernmentalism is transcended and supplemented by a multidimensional mix of supranational, departmental and/or epistemic dynamics. This book also theoretically explores conditions under which these decision-making dynamics gain prevalence. It is argued that the decision-making dynamics emerging within an emergent European executive order are conditioned by the formal organisation of its composite parts and by the patterns of social interaction that emerge among its civil servants. Political processes and political systems can neither be adequately understood nor explained without including the organisational dimension of executive orders.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

16.03.10: EU Foreign Policymaking Post-Lisbon: Confused and Contrived - 0 views

  • Abstract: The European Union finally succeeded in ramming through introduction of the Lisbon Treaty in December 2009. The treaty was touted by the powers in Brussels as the vehicle that would create the long-awaited "single phone line" to Europe. Lisbon was to streamline the gargantuan EU bureaucracy and make communication between the two sides of the Atlantic smooth and tidy. Instead, the mess is worse than before, with five EU "presidents" tripping over each other and confusing Washington with ill-defined, overlapping, and flat-out confusing roles and foreign policy objectives. The Lisbon Treaty essentially allows the EU a foreign policy power-grab, the driving force of which is the notion that the countries of Europe will be stronger collectively than they are separately. But sovereignty cannot be traded for influence, and the EU's attempts to do so could threaten the security of Europe-- and of the United States.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

05.03.10: 'Difficult birth' awaits EU diplomatic service - 0 views

  • The birth of the European External Action Service, one of the most anticipated innovations of the Lisbon Treaty, will be a difficult one, admitted a top European Commission official yesterday (4 March).
  • Implicitly, he appeared to confirm that the blueprint, already drafted by Ashton's committee, was encountering difficulties in some member countries.

    A "long discussion" had taken place at the level of EU member-state ambassadors (Coreper) yesterday, he said, and talks were due to continue at the informal foreign ministers' meeting in Cordoba, Spain, tomorrow (5 March). The European Parliament will also have a say, he added.

    But recruiting staff from the member countries will take time, Vale de Almeida said, adding that upgrading the European Commission's existing network of foreign delegations will also take "a few months".

    Speaking to EurActiv, Vale de Almeida said that if the decision was taken by the end of April as planned, he expected the service to start work by the end of the year.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

31.12.09: Spain test drives new model of EU leadership - 0 views

  • Spain takes over the rotating presidency on 1 January, but it will be a six-month tenure with a twist, as Madrid is the first to grapple with the complexities of the EU's new legal framework.

    The Lisbon Treaty entered into force one month ago, ushering in a new layer of governance in the European Union - a permanent president of the European Council - but keeping the old system of rotating presidencies, only with a less prominent status.

    It will be up to Spain's prime minister, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, to see how this plays out in everyday practice so that he and Herman Van Rompuy, the newly appointed EU president, are neither publicly nor internally stepping on each others' toes.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

18.12.09: Spain vows to take backstage role as EU President - 1 views

  • Spain vowed to take a backstage role during its stint as holder of the six-month rotating EU Presidency, saying the frontmen will be Herman Van Rompuy, the EU's first permanent President, and Catherine Ashton, the new High Representative for foreign affairs.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

02.12.09: EU hails 'new era' as Lisbon Treaty goes into force - 0 views

  • The treaty, which aims to make decision-making smoother, creates a long-term president and enhances the powers of the EU foreign policy chief, is intended to give the 27-country bloc more political clout to match its economic weight.
  • The Lisbon Treaty changes the rules on how decisions are reached by the EU because decision-making has become unwieldy since the accession of 10 countries, mostly from eastern and central Europe, in 2004 and two more in 2007.

    It hands more power to the European Parliament, which shares some legislative responsibilities with the European Commission - the EU executive and a powerful regulatory body. Member states' leaders retain a lot of power.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

27.11.09: Beefed up enlargement portfolio delights eastern neighbours - 0 views

  • The merger of European enlargement with neighbourhood policy in a single portfolio headed by a Czech EU diplomat is raising hopes in eastern countries such as Moldova and Georgia about their long-term European future.

    The list of portfolios unveiled Friday by European Commission president Jose Manuel Barros includes a single post for enlargement and neighbourhood policy, taken by Czech EU affairs minister and former ambassador to Brussels Stefan Fuele. Currently part of the Commission's foreign policy dossier, relations with EU's southern and eastern neighbours will be mainly managed by Mr Fuele "in close co-operation" with the new top diplomat and commission vice-president Catherine Ashton.

  • The move is good news particularly for the six countries in the so-called Eastern Partnership policy launched under the Czech EU presidency earlier this year - Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Belarus, Armenia and Azerbaijan. The first three have already openly been advocating to be included in the bloc's enlargement policy.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

26.11.09: Parliament to get extra observer MEPs from 12 countries - 0 views

  • When the reform treaty was drafted, EU governments decided to expand the legislature from 736 to 751 members, so as to reflect the enlarged union. Elections for the current European Parliament took place in June, however, when the Lisbon Treaty's future was still uncertain following its rejection by referendum in Ireland.

    Some countries benefitting from the extra seats, such as Spain or Sweden, elected "reserve MEPs" who will take their observer status as soon as national governments take a decision on the matter. But others, notably France, did not. This complicates the matter even further, as they are now likely to send national parliamentarians as observers and hold early European elections for the extra seats once the legal basis for their full powers is in place.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

24.11.09: MEPs await large extension of powers - 0 views

  • MEPs are awaiting next week's entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty with impatience as the new institutional rules give the EU assembly a say in an array of new areas, including the EU's money-eating farm policy and its long-term budget.

    While the new EU foreign policy chief and council president represents a shake-up for the external face of the bloc, the internal shake-up, placing further substantial co-legislative power into the hands of euro-parliamentarians, is widely seen as the more profound change.

  • Come 1 December, the parliament will gain a say on, amongst other areas, legal immigration, judicial co-operation in criminal matters, police co-operation, structural funds, services of general economic interest [euro-jargon for public services], structural funds, transport, personal data protection and intellectual property rights.

    The rise in legislative powers represents almost a doubling in power, with the instances where deputies will work on proposed laws on an equal footing with member states rising from around 40 to almost 90.

    Of these, the most important areas are seen as energy security, common commercial policy and farm policy, with the last policy area accounting - contentiously - for around 40 percent of the EU's budget.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

23.11.09: New foreign policy chief to start work next week - 0 views

  • The EU's new foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, will take up her duties next week, in a continuation of the political whirlwind which saw her suddenly propelled from her short stint as trade commissioner to taking on what will be one of the union's most high profile jobs.
  • Ms Ashton, whose meteoric ascent has come as a surprise even to her, will have to hit the ground running. She is set to attend an EU-Ukraine summit on 4 December. The first EU foreign ministers' meeting, which she is supposed to chair under the new rules, will take place on 7 December.

    It will also fall to her to oversee the setting up the EU's external action service, a thousands-strong diplomatic outfit that one EU official described as the greatest-ever change to the commission's bureaucracy.

    Her 1 December start opens up other questions, such as what will happen to the trade portfolio which she will vacate and what will be the role of Benita Ferrero-Waldner, the current EU external relations commissioner.

    Ms Ashton's new job merges the external relations commissioner post with that of the high representative for foreign policy, currently held by Javier Solana, for the first time putting foreign policy clout together with the financial means to implement it into the hands of one person.

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

18.11.09: EU leaders deadlocked over new foreign post - 0 views

  • THE SPANISH government has nominated foreign minister Miguel Ángel Moratinos for the post of EU foreign policy chief, a move that suggests the bloc's leaders remain deadlocked over the appointment with only one day to go before a crucial summit tomorrow night.

    Mr Moratinos's arrival as a late runner in the race for the foreign post comes amid lingering political divisions among EU leaders over the candidacy of Belgian prime minister Herman Van Rompuy for the presidency of the European Council.

    As British prime minister Gordon Brown continues to promote his predecessor Tony Blair for the presidency of the council, a widening range of candidates are now lining up for the foreign affairs position.

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