Liberalizing markets, liberalizing welfare

Hanan Haber (London School of Economics, Photo credit LSE Department of Government)

The EU’s ventures into social policy-making have been few and far between, as member states remain reluctant to cede their competencies on taxation, spending and social insurance to the supranational level. Nonetheless, albeit a lack of capacity for social policy-making, positive integration via supranational social regulation can still have a crucial impact on welfare state regimes across the EU. In his article “Liberalizing markets, liberalizing welfare? Economic reform and social regulation in the EU’s electricity regime” published in the Journal of European Public Policy, Hanan Haber analyses how and why social provisions were added to the EU’s electricity sector reform, highlighting their impact on national welfare states. Hanan’s research shows that the EU’s response to consumer dissatisfaction amid power blackouts and rising prices emphasised the protection of vulnerable consumers and the concept of energy poverty, which reflected regulations common in the liberal welfare regime of the United Kingdom. By adopting supranational social regulations concerned with an issue by and large exclusive to liberal welfare states, the EU introduced liberal welfare problems and solutions to other types of welfare regimes, effectively “promoting a liberal model of welfare through social regulation, pushing member states towards this type of welfare.”

A new research agenda for EU migration policies and politics

Saskia Bonjour (University of Amsterdam), Ariadna Ripoll Servent (Photo credit ©BAGSS | Bamberg Graduate School of Social Sciences, University of Bamberg) & Eiko Thielemann (London School of Economics)

Amid the communitarization of migration policy, the driving forces shaping EU migration governance have been the subject of a vivid scholarly debate. If anything, the fallout from the EU’s migration crisis is likely to fan the latter’s flames. Zooming in on the actors and mechanisms behind migration policy change in the EU, Saskia Bonjour, Ariadna Ripoll Servent and Eiko Thielemann identify three areas that deserve the attention of future research. In their article “Beyond venue shopping and liberal constraint: a new research agenda for EU migration policies and politics” published in the Journal of European Public Policy, Saskia, Ariadna and Eiko call on future research to open up the black box of preference formation in member states and EU institutions, to analyse when, how and why we observe variation in actors’ influence in migration policy-making processes, and to embrace greater transparency in conceptualizing and measuring the extent and the content of policy change. They argue that scholars’ focus on these three axes may allow the community “to engage in a more productive debate and collectively work toward gaining greater insights into the multiple puzzles of EU migration governance.”

JEPP@25 – Our Best-Of Collection

Throughout 2018, we ask JEPP authors and members from JEPP’s editorial board to share with us their stories as to how the research published in JEPP over the past 25 years influenced their own thinking and research about Europe, the EU, and public policy. This is what they are saying.

Sara Hobolt, London School of Economics, United Kingdom

Mair, Peter, and Jacques Thomassen. Political representation and government in the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy 17(1), 2010, pp. 20-35.

Sara Hobolt (London School of Economics)

“Mair and Thomassen’s 2010 article presents an insightful and refreshingly provocative assessment of representation in the European Union.  Going against the grain of much EU scholarship, Mair and Thomassen on the one hand warn against the move towards parliamentary government at the EU level. On the other hand, they argue that despite the deficiencies of European Parliament elections, representation at the European level works better than often assumed because national parties effectively represent their constituents’ interests in the EU. This article thus provides two important lessons to those of us studying democracy in the EU: first, the importance of examining the interconnected pathways of representation at both the national and the EU-level and secondly, the vital role of political parties in shaping and re-shaping European democracy.”

Christoph Knill, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany

Scharpf, Fritz W. Introduction: the problem-solving capacity of multi-level governance. Journal of European Public Policy 4(4), 1997, pp. 520-538.

Christoph Knill (Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich)

“Looking back at 25 years of JEPP, there are definitely many articles and special issues that have been highly inspiring and relevant for my work. Yet, probably the most influential pieces date back to my early postdoc years, because they have been particularly formative for my own analytical thinking. In this regard, the special issue on “the problem-solving capacity of multilevel governance” edited by Fitz W. Scharpf in 1997 (JEPP vol. 4, no. 4) certainly played an outstanding role. The collection of pieces contained highly inspiring papers, grounded in neo-institutional and game-theoretical analyses of dynamics and patterns of EU policy-making that in many ways still constitutes the today’s benchmark for research in these areas.”

Frank Schimmelfennig, Swiss Institute of Technology/ETH, Switzerland

Grabbe, Heather. How does Europeanization affect CEE governance? Conditionality, diffusion, and diversity. Journal of European Public Policy 8(6), 2001, pp. 1013-1031.

Frank Schimmelfennig (Swiss Institute of Technology/ETH)

“Papers on Europeanization account for a large part of what JEPP has published over the past 25 years. Heather Grabbe’s paper on how Europeanization affects governments and governance in Central and Eastern Europe was one of the first studies to apply this perspective to EU enlargement and the candidate countries – and to point out the important role of conditionality in this process. Heather’s paper was also influential in distinguishing various mechanisms of Europeanization and their interaction with domestic and international processes of change and influence in the region. From a present-day perspective, it is worth rereading the article’s conclusions on the “executive bias” of Europeanization in the region: “the EU’s efforts to promote democratic development are at odds with the incentives created by the accession process, where the EU gives priority to efficiency over legitimacy” (p. 1029).”

Frank Baumgartner, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, United States

Frank Baumgartner (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

“I keep a running bibliography of articles and books I use in my work; the current version runs about 230 pages. In that list, I count 38 articles published in JEPP. Discounting those that I have published myself (often with different collaborators), those published in a special issue I co-edited from September 2006 (issue 13, number 7), as well as 15 additional articles published by my collaborators from the Comparative Agendas Project (e.g., works by authors including Breunig, Princen, Soroka, Walgrave, Green-Pedersen, Bevan, John, and others), this leaves another 15 JEPP pieces. As an empiricist, I have to say then that these are the JEPP pieces that have affected my thinking; they are the ones I cite and use in my own work. The interesting element about JEPP and me is that the influence starts with Volume 1, Issue 1, where Guy Peter’s “Agenda‐setting in the European Community” (1993) has place of honor, the first substantive article in the first issue of the journal. This was quickly followed by Dudley and Richardson’s 1996 “Why Does Policy Change over Time?”; Coen’s 1997 “The Evolution of the Large Firm as a Political Actor in the European Union”; Mazey’s 1998 “The European Union and Women’s Rights”; and so on. My list includes articles on such a broad range of substantive issues that I feel that I have learned considerably about what the EU and its member governments actually do (one the reasons I enjoy studying public policy); institutions of EU governance; venue-shopping; framing; multiple-streams applications, not to mention lobbying and policy process issues more generally. Of course I cannot even say how many of these articles I have reviewed for the journal, or ones not published from which I have also learned so much. I attach below the articles drawn from my bibliography, excluding those in which I participated. My involvement with JEPP has been from the beginning, and I’m sure I have learned more than I have contributed. Thanks to the many authors for teaching me so much.”

A Baumgartner JEPP bibliography:

Articles by scholars unconnected to me by co-authorship.

  1. Peters, B. Guy. Agenda‐setting in the European Community. Journal of European Public Policy 1(1), 1993, pp. 9–26.
  2. Dudley, Geoffrey, and Jeremy Richardson. Why Does Policy Change over Time? Adversarial Policy Communities, Alternative Policy Arenas, and British Trunk Roads Policy 1945–95. Journal of European Public Policy 3(1), 1996, pp. 63–83.
  3. Coen, David. The Evolution of the Large Firm as a Political Actor in the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy 4(1), 1997, pp. 91–108.
  4. Mazey, Sonia. The European Union and Women’s Rights: From the Europeanization of National Agendas to the Nationalization of a European Agenda? Journal of European Public Policy 5(1), 1998, pp. 131–152.
  5. Pijnenburg, Bert. EU Lobbying by ad hoc Coalitions: an Exploratory Case Study. Journal of European Public Policy. 5(2), 1998, pp. 303–321.
  6. Meijerink, Sander. Understanding policy stability and change. The interplay of advocacy coalitions and epistemic communities, windows of opportunity, and Dutch coastal flooding policy 1945–2003. Journal of European Public Policy 12(6), 2005, pp. 1060–1077.
  7. Pralle, Sarah B. Timing and sequence in agenda-setting and policy change: a comparative study of lawn care pesticide politics in Canada and the US. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), pp. 987–1005.
  8. Daviter, Falk. Policy Framing in the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy. 14(4), 2007, pp. 654–66.
  9. Zahariadis, Nikolaos. Ambiguity and choice in European public policy. Journal of European Public Policy 15(4), 2008, pp. 514–530.
  10. Boin, Arjen, Paul t’Hart, and Allan McConnell. Crisis exploitation: Political and policy impacts of framing contests. Journal of European Public Policy 16(1), 2009, pp. 81–106.
  11. Ackrill, Robert, and Adrian Kay. Multiple streams in EU policymaking: The case of the 2005 sugar reform. Journal of European Public Policy 18(1), 2011, pp. 72–89.
  12. Bach, Ian. Measuring quality of life for public policy: an idea whose time has come? Agenda-setting dynamics in the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy 20(1), 2013, pp. 21–38.
  13. Ackrill, Robert, Adrian Kay, and Nikolaos Zahariadis. Ambiguity, multiple streams, and EU policy Journal of European Public Policy 20(6), 2013, pp. 871–887.
  14. Duer, Andreas, and Gemma Mateo. Public Opinion and Interest Group Influence: How Citizen Groups Derailed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. Journal of European Public Policy 21(8), 2014, pp. 1199–1217.
  15. Beyers, Jan, Tom Donas, and Bert Faussen. No Place Like Home? Explaining Venue Selection of Regional Offices in Brussels. Journal of European Public Policy 22(5), 2015, pp. 589–608.

By my students or collaborators from the agendas project:

  1. Timmermans, Arco, and Peter Scholten. The political flow of wisdom: Science institutions as policy venues in the Netherlands. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1104–1118.
  2. Princen, Sebastiaan, and Mark Rhinard. Crashing and Creeping: Agenda-setting Dynamics in the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1119–1132.
  3. Breunig, Christian. The more things change, the more things stay the same: A comparative analysis of budget punctuations. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1069–1085.
  4. Walgrave, Stefaan, Frédéric Varone, and Patrick Dumont. Policy With or Without Parties? A Comparative Analysis of Policy Priorities and Policy Change in Belgium (1991–2000). Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1021–38.
  5. John, Peter. Explaining policy change: the impact of the media, public opinion and political violence on urban budgets in England. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1053–1068.
  6. John, Peter. The policy agendas project: a review. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 975–986.
  7. Penner, Erin, Kelly Blidook, and Stuart N. Soroka. Legislative priorities and public opinion: representation of partisan agendas in the Canadian House of Commons. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1006–1020.
  8. Green-Pedersen, Christoffer, and John Wilkerson. How agenda-setting attributes shape politics: Basic dilemmas, problem attention and health politics developments in Denmark and the US. Journal of European Public Policy 13(7), 2006, pp. 1039–1052.
  9. Princen, Sebastiaan. Agenda-setting in the European Union: A Theoretical Exploration and Agenda for Research. Journal of European Public Policy 14(1), 2007, pp. 21–38.
  10. Mahoney, Christine. Networking versus Allying: The Decision of Interest Groups to Join Coalitions in the US and the EU. Journal of European Public Policy, 14(3), 2007, pp. 366–383.
  11. Walgrave, Stefaan, and Rens Vliegenthart. Why are policy agendas punctuated? Friction and cascading in parliament and mass media in Belgium. Journal of European Public Policy 17(8), 2010, pp. 1147–1170.
  12. John, Peter, Shaun Bevan and Will Jennings. The Policy-Opinion Link and Institutional Change: the Policy Agenda of the United Kingdom and Scottish Parliaments, 1977–2008. Journal of European Public Policy 18(7), 2011, pp. 1052–1068.
  13. Princen, Sebastiaan. Agenda-setting Strategies in EU Policy Processes. Journal of European Public Policy 18(7), 2011, pp. 927–943.
  14. Princen, Sebastiaan. Punctuated equilibrium theory and the European Union. Journal of European Public Policy 20(6), 2013, pp. 854–870.
  15. Citi, Manuele. EU budgetary dynamics: incremental or punctuated equilibrium? Journal of European Public Policy 20(8), 2013, pp. 1157–1173.