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Transparantie in de EU-Raad

Onvermijdelijk en onmisbaar? Onverzadelijk en onuitvoerbaar?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden transparency, Council of the EU, access to documents, democratic legitimacy
Auteurs Dr. Maarten Hillebrandt
Samenvatting

    The democratic deficit is generally observed to be one of the largest challenges facing the European Union. This is in spite of the fact that the member states introduced transparency in 1992 to address this legitimacy problem. This article asks why, after several decades, the transparency policy has still not delivered on its promise. In doing so, it bases itself on new empirical data that was collected in the context of a recently presented dissertation (Hillebrandt, 2017), while drawing a strict distinction between the empirical policy change question and the normative desirability question. From a longitudinal comparative analysis, a differentiated empirical image arises. On the one hand, a clear enhancement of legislative transparency can be discerned; on the other hand, a plurality of transparency-evasive practices has emerged in the area of non-legislative decision-making. This equivocal image supports contrasting normative responses, according to which transparency is respectively cast as an indispensable ideal, a fiction, or a solution in search of a problem.


Dr. Maarten Hillebrandt
Dossier

De politieke economie van macro-economische onbalansen in de eurozone

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Macroeconomic imbalances Eurozone, Euro crisis, Excessive imbalance procedure, Reform EMU
Auteurs Dr. Peter Rodenburg
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The introduction of the euro led to large macroeconomic imbalances between Euro countries. Under pressure from the euro crisis, the European Commission adopted EU regulations 1174/2011 and 1176/2011 in 2011 with the aim of reducing these macroeconomic imbalances. These measures include the Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure to identify macroeconomic imbalances and, if necessary, to prompt Member States to take corrective action. This article provides an overview of this recent EU policy for countering imbalances and provides a political-economic analysis of the macroeconomic imbalances in Europe and its consequences. In particular, it focuses on the conflicting interests of the euro-area countries with current account surpluses and deficits. This article also analyses the possibilities offered by the 2019 European election for European policy makers to strengthen this policy. The article concludes that the surplus countries, despite the apparent advantage of trade balance surpluses, do have an interest in reducing imbalances in the EU but fail to translate this into actual policy. The Commission’s role in reducing imbalances is likely to remain limited, even after the 2019 European elections.


Dr. Peter Rodenburg
Peter Rodenburg is Universitair docent bij de afdeling Europese studies van de Universiteit van Amsterdam.
Dossier

De Europese vakbeweging en de vormgeving van sociaal beleid

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Social Europe, European Union, Social policy, Trade unions, ETUC
Auteurs Drs. Saskia Boumans
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The European project currently faces not only an economic crisis, but a moral one as well. The economic growth model of social justice combined with market-oriented policies, also referred to as the European social model has lost much of its meaning after ten years of austerity and financial calamities. In 2012 ECB President Draghi says in the Wall Street Journal that the European social model is “gone”, a thing of the past. While only a couple of years later the European Pillar of Social Rights is put in place. What is happening with ‘Social Europe’? And how do trade unions, as a historical motor of social policy in the member states, relate to the European social model, especially since the financial crisis. This article deals with the position of trade unions vis-à-vis European social policy and the European institutions. The European social model, economic governance and the collective bargaining system are discussed as examples of post-crisis European social policy. It will be argued that although the European Commission gives institutional space to social policy and to a role for trade unions, it has always been subordinate to economic integration. And moreover that the recent economic crisis is used at the European level to obtain almost complete control over social policy in the member states.


Drs. Saskia Boumans
Drs. Saskia Boumans werkt als promovendus bij AIAS-HSI (UvA) aan een onderzoek naar werkgeversorganisaties in collectieve onderhandelingen, en heeft de afgelopen vijftien jaar voor de vakbeweging gewerkt.
Dossier

De schuldencrisis in de eurozone: oorzaken, aanpak en implicaties

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Eurozone crisis, Financialization, Bail-outs, Austerity, Banking union, Quantitative easing
Auteurs Dr. Henk Overbeek
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Ten years ago, now, the Eurozone began to shake on its foundations. This article traces the genesis of the crisis and the present state of affairs. As to the causes of the global financial crisis in 2008, I argue that contrary to common understanding, the financial crisis had its deeper causes in a decades old tendency towards crisis in the real economy, produced by the continuous overaccumulation of capital which can only return profits by undertaking speculative short-term investments (a phenomenon known as ‘financialisation’). I then trace how the global financial crisis morphed into a crisis of public deficits and debt in 2010-2011, particularly in the Eurozone. Three factors are shown to be responsible: financialization, design faults in the European monetary union, and the neo-mercantilist strategy of especially Germany and the Netherlands. The paper next looks at the five main traits of the policy responses in the Eurozone: bailing out governments and banks through creating emergency funds; imposition of austerity and budget discipline for member state governments; attempting to create and complete a Eurozone banking union; subsequently the European Central Bank engaged on an unprecedented scale in ‘quantitative easing’; and finally, institutional reform in an attempt to repair the most pressing design faults of the EMU. The paper concludes that the underlying structural factors leading up to the crisis have only been addressed incompletely: the overaccumulation of capital continues, the completion of the banking union is in an impasse, quantitative easing has mostly just intensified financialization by pushing up asset prizes, and institutional reform has taken the form of a fundamentally undemocratic attempt at monetary and political union by stealth. The broader legitimacy of the European project has been substantially undermined, and Europe is not in a better position than eight years ago in case of a new global crisis.


Dr. Henk Overbeek
Henk Overbeek is Emeritus Hoogleraar Internationale betrekkingen aan de afdeling Bestuurswetenschap en Politicologie van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Casus

De EMU heeft geen weeffouten

Een kritiek op de discussienota van de Europese Commissie over de verdieping van de EMU

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2017
Auteurs Dr. Adriaan Schout
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this feature authors discuss recent research findings that are of interest to readers of Beleid en Maatschappij.


Dr. Adriaan Schout
Dr. Adriaan Schout is Senior Research Fellow and Coordinator Europe bij het Instituut Clingendael.

Dr. Alexandre Afonso
Dr. Alexandre Afonso is assistant professor aan de Universiteit van Leiden.
Artikel

De parlementarisatie van Europees economisch beleid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden European Parliament, politicisation, economic policy, democratic deficit
Auteurs Dr. Adriaan Schout, Jan Marinus Wiersma, Mariana Gomes Neto e.a.
Samenvatting

    Since the euro crisis the EU has seen a deepening of integration with a new framework for economic and budgetary coordination. With the new framework reforms in pension or housing market are coordinated at the European level. This comprehensive set of rules and monitoring mechanisms has revived the debate on Europe’s democratic deficit. This article describes how the European Parliament (EP) tries to fill the democratic void in economic governance. The EP’s formal role is limited, but by using mostly informal mechanisms the EP is setting in motion an incremental process towards further control. This development should be seen in light of a political battle on the interpretation of the new rules, which has accordingly become increasingly politicized. The Dutch have always wanted a European economic policy on the basis of technocracy and rules, but at the same time Europe’s political union draws ever closer.


Dr. Adriaan Schout

Jan Marinus Wiersma

Mariana Gomes Neto

David Bokhorst

Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters
Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters is zelfstandig onderzoeker en publicist en is tevens bijzonder hoogleraar lokaal en regionaal bestuur aan de Universiteit Maastricht. E-mail: info@klaartjepeters.nl.

Olaf van Vliet
Olaf van Vliet is promovendus bij de afdeling Economie van de Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid van de Universiteit Leiden. Correspondentiegegevens: Olaf van Vliet Universiteit Leiden Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid Afdeling Economie Steenschuur 25, 2311 ES Leiden o.p.van.vliet@law.leidenuniv.nl

Jelle Visser
De auteur is als hoogleraar empirische sociologie verbonden aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam en is wetenschappelijk directeur van het Amsterdams Instituut voor Arbeidsstudies (AIAS).

    This article is the introduction to this special issue in which the Europeanisation of Dutch polity, politics and policy forms the central focus of attention. The main question we address in this special issue is to what extent the Netherlands has changed under the influence of processes of Europeanisation. This article first discusses the state-of-the-art Europeanisation literature; then it sets out to discuss four problems with this literature. Based on the insights generated by the contributors to this special issue, the authors conclude that for a better understanding of processes of Europeanisation, the EU should no longer be seen as an actor, but rather as an (cluster of) arena(s) in which a variety of actors (member states, EU institutions, interest groups, et cetera) are trying to achieve their political goals.


Sebastiaan Princen
Verbonden aan de Utrechtse School voor Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap van de Universiteit Utrecht Adres: Bijlhouwerstraat 6, 3511 ZC Utrecht, e-mail: s.princen@usg.uu.nl

Kutsal Yesilkagit
Verbonden aan de Utrechtse School voor Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap van de Universiteit Utrecht Adres: Bijlhouwerstraat 6, 3511 ZC Utrecht, e-mail: k.yesilkagit@usg.uu.nl
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