Smith, James. (2003) The Puzzles and Paradoxes of Europeanisation - Lessons from the Scottish Experience. In: UNSPECIFIED, Sheffield, UK.
[Introduction]. In recent studies of Europeanisation the word ‘puzzle’ has proved to be a frequent visitor. In essence, this puzzle is seen to revolve around the belief that while membership of the European Union (EU) has wrought tremendous impact upon the shape and direction of national policies and policy processes, the impact upon the bureaucratic infrastructure of domestic government systems has by comparison been somewhat limited. Of late, however, a means of resolving this puzzle has been put forward. In short, the preoccupation of historical-institutionalist analysis with largely structural, institutional and procedural-based aspects of change may, it is argued, have led to the apparently divergent or contradictory paths taken by the respective policy-related and bureaucratic-administrative forms of Europeanisation. A less puzzling interpretation of developments might flow if, in addition to the purely institutionalist perspective, more attention were to be focused upon broader cultural factors and the role played by individuals within the context of bureaucratic adaptation processes. This paper attempts to follow the latter course by drawing on a historical-based study of the long-term impact of bureaucratic Europeanisation on a government department across a period of some twenty-five years. The focus is upon the relative depth of Europeanisation experienced in that particular case and the extent to which that Europeanisation was in fact influenced not only by structural and procedural aspects of the UK administrative system but also by cultural, actor-based and departmental-specific factors.
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