Sedelmeier, Ulrich. (2001) "Sectoral dynamics of the EU's accession requirements: The role of policy paradigms". In: UNSPECIFIED, Madison, Wisconsin. (Unpublished)
In order to better understand the EU's accession requirements towards the central and eastern European countries (CEECs), or, more specifically, the degree of the EU's flexibility in demanding alignment from the CEECs, we need to conceptualize how the broader dynamics that shape the EU's policy towards the CEECs translate into specific substantive policy outcomes in particular sectors and policy areas. Theories of the political economy of trade policy, and public choice approaches would suggest that policy outcomes in particular sectors are largely a function of the balance of the pressures of societal groups. By contrast, I argue that the policy impact of the broader dynamics on sectoral policies is crucially mediated by two additional factors, which might under certain conditions counterbalance the pressure of interest groups. The first concerns that structure of the policy coordination process, which affects the access of the respective policy communities to decisions on particular issues. The second factor related to the policy paradigms that underpin EU policy in the various issue areas. These policy paradigms shape the preference formation of sectoral policy-makers, and therefore affect the ability to build "winning coalitions" in a particular sector that are sufficiently strong to bring about a policy change.
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