Department of Political Science

Political and instrumental leadership in major EU reforms. The role and influence of the EU institutions in setting-up the Fiscal Compact

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Political and instrumental leadership in major EU reforms. The role and influence of the EU institutions in setting-up the Fiscal Compact. / Smeets, Sandrino; Beach, Derek.

In: Journal of European Public Policy, Vol. 27, No. 1, 2020, p. 63-81.

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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@article{3977812e2d1244cca8ae6007824600ef,
title = "Political and instrumental leadership in major EU reforms. The role and influence of the EU institutions in setting-up the Fiscal Compact",
abstract = "This paper analyses the role and influence of the EU institutions in major reform negotiations. We argue that one of the paradoxes of European Council dominated decision-making has been the enhanced dependence on EU institutions to translate broad priorities into actual reforms. We substantiate this claim by means of an in-depth process-tracing analysis of the Fiscal Compact. The conventional wisdom is that the Fiscal Compact was a German dictate. Instead, we show that it resulted from a division of labour: political leadership by member states in the control room, and instrumental leadership by the institutions in the machine room. Such instrumental leadership is unjustly depicted as mere facilitation, with little impact on process and outcome. We juxtapose the Fiscal Compact to two similar cases of Germany-led EU reforms (the Euro-Plus-Pact and Contractual Arrangements) to reveal the leadership activities by the institutions and the fingerprints these left in the final outcome.",
keywords = "EU institutions, Economic and monetary union, European integration, leadership, treaty on stability coordination and governance",
author = "Sandrino Smeets and Derek Beach",
year = "2020",
doi = "10.1080/13501763.2019.1572211",
language = "English",
volume = "27",
pages = "63--81",
journal = "Journal of European Public Policy",
issn = "1350-1763",
publisher = "Routledge",
number = "1",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Political and instrumental leadership in major EU reforms. The role and influence of the EU institutions in setting-up the Fiscal Compact

AU - Smeets, Sandrino

AU - Beach, Derek

PY - 2020

Y1 - 2020

N2 - This paper analyses the role and influence of the EU institutions in major reform negotiations. We argue that one of the paradoxes of European Council dominated decision-making has been the enhanced dependence on EU institutions to translate broad priorities into actual reforms. We substantiate this claim by means of an in-depth process-tracing analysis of the Fiscal Compact. The conventional wisdom is that the Fiscal Compact was a German dictate. Instead, we show that it resulted from a division of labour: political leadership by member states in the control room, and instrumental leadership by the institutions in the machine room. Such instrumental leadership is unjustly depicted as mere facilitation, with little impact on process and outcome. We juxtapose the Fiscal Compact to two similar cases of Germany-led EU reforms (the Euro-Plus-Pact and Contractual Arrangements) to reveal the leadership activities by the institutions and the fingerprints these left in the final outcome.

AB - This paper analyses the role and influence of the EU institutions in major reform negotiations. We argue that one of the paradoxes of European Council dominated decision-making has been the enhanced dependence on EU institutions to translate broad priorities into actual reforms. We substantiate this claim by means of an in-depth process-tracing analysis of the Fiscal Compact. The conventional wisdom is that the Fiscal Compact was a German dictate. Instead, we show that it resulted from a division of labour: political leadership by member states in the control room, and instrumental leadership by the institutions in the machine room. Such instrumental leadership is unjustly depicted as mere facilitation, with little impact on process and outcome. We juxtapose the Fiscal Compact to two similar cases of Germany-led EU reforms (the Euro-Plus-Pact and Contractual Arrangements) to reveal the leadership activities by the institutions and the fingerprints these left in the final outcome.

KW - EU institutions

KW - Economic and monetary union

KW - European integration

KW - leadership

KW - treaty on stability coordination and governance

U2 - 10.1080/13501763.2019.1572211

DO - 10.1080/13501763.2019.1572211

M3 - Journal article

VL - 27

SP - 63

EP - 81

JO - Journal of European Public Policy

JF - Journal of European Public Policy

SN - 1350-1763

IS - 1

ER -