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“The Spaces of European Union Government”

Chalmers, Damian. (1999) “The Spaces of European Union Government”. In: UNSPECIFIED, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Unpublished)

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    The first two sections of this article consider the two pillars on which most of the claims for the foundations of EC governments are based, namely that it has established a sovereign system of law and new forms of governance structures. I argue that for a variety of reasons neither of these can explain how EU government actualizes itself. For this, I argue in the third section, one must look to the techniques of problem-solving that the EC has adopted. These not only structure the style of EC policy-making but decenter power far more radically than the multi-level governance literature would suggest. This leads to a corresponding centering of social relations, with the center of gravity of much of EU government being vested in two forms of social institution, the locale and those organisations that institutionalise expertise. The fourth section examines the manner in which this feature is exacerbated by the resources available to the EU institutions to affect change. Legal instruments are the central resource available to the EU institutions, but a quality of this resource that differentiates it from other forms is that it transforms government into a dialectical, mutually constitutive process. In the fifth section I argue that much of the crisis of confidence in EU government stems from the style of problem-solving that it has adopted, which creates a fissure between interests and identities. I then examine how EU government could possibly ‘legitimise’ itself through being more receptive to the politics of identity.

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    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > political affairs > governance: EU & national level
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > law & legal affairs-general (includes international law)
    EU policies and themes > EU institutions & developments > institutional development/policy > decision making/policy-making
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Conference: European Union Studies Association (EUSA) > Biennial Conference > 1999 (6th), June 2-5, 1999
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 05 May 2006
    Page Range: p. 56
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:21

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