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An Emergent European Executive Order$
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Jarle Trondal

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199579426

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579426.001.0001

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The autonomy of the European Commission reassessed

The autonomy of the European Commission reassessed

(p.59) Chapter 3 The autonomy of the European Commission reassessed
An Emergent European Executive Order

Jarle Trondal (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Chapter 3 explores and reassesses the autonomy of the Commission. The ambition of this chapter is to reassess the behavioural autonomy of the Commission, as well as organizational conditions thereof. To accomplish this, Chapter 3 utilizes one under‐researched laboratory of the Commission: seconded national experts (SNEs). It is argued that SNEs may serve as a crucial test‐bed of Commission autonomy due to SNEs' ambiguous and short‐term affiliation towards the Commission. Whereas past studies claims that SNEs have a predominant intergovernmental behavioural pattern, this chapter demonstrates that the SNEs foremost blend departmental, epistemic, and supranational behavioural dynamics, thereby safeguarding their behavioural autonomy. This chapter also demonstrates that the autonomy of the Commission is organizationally contingent and not only subject to what Lipsky (1980: 19) calls actors' conspicuous desire for autonomy.

Keywords:   Autonomy, European Commission, organizational approach, organizational compatibility, recruitment procedures, seconded national experts, socialization

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