Une Liaison Transnationale

Exploring the Role of NGOs in EU Foreign Policy-making on the ICC

Abstract

CFSP has traditionally been studied as a policy-making domain that is reserved to negotiations among formal representatives from the EU and its member states. In this article, we draw attention to the way in which the CFSP bureaucracy interacts with transnational actors from civil society. We conceptualize this relationship on the basis of three mechanisms: access to European policy-making in return for information, coalition building dynamics, and socialization processes. We illustrate the importance of these mechanisms for the EU’s policy on the International Criminal Court (ICC). Specifically, we argue that NGOs have gained routine access to the COJUR-ICC working group, where they have obtained a prominent status as experts, participating in information exchange coalition building dynamics. This has also translated into NGO influence on important aspects of the EU’s foreign policy towards the ICC.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    A number of studies have focused on the role played by civil society actors during the implementation stage of the European foreign policy cycle, e.g. looking at the way the EU cooperates with local NGOs in its enlargement and neighbourhood policy (Raik 2006; Parau 2009).

  2. 2.

    In a similar vein, through its contacts at the EEAS the CICC has on a frequent basis assisted in preparing speeches or trips of the EU’s High Representative to third countries, ensuring that the ICC is part of the agenda (Interviews 4, 5, 8). The same process applies with respect to trips of the EU Special Representative for Human Rights, or even for the activities of specific EU delegations in third countries (Interview 4, 1).

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Funding

Part of the research for this article was made possible by the EU-NormCon research project (Normative contestation in Europe: Implications for the EU in a changing global order)—funded by the National R + D Plan of the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competiveness (CSO2016-79205-P)—and by the Ikerbasque Start-up Grant.

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Correspondence to Oriol Costa.

Interviews

Interviews

  • Interview 1 with an EEAS official working on the ICC, conducted via phone, 30 April 2016.

  • Interview 2 with a former representative of the CICC, conducted in Brussels, 11 February 2016.

  • Interview 3 with a senior former EU member state official working on the ICC, conducted in his/her capital city, 23 October 2015.

  • Interview 4 with a representative of the CICC, conducted in Brussels, 21 January 2016.

  • Interview 5 with a representative of the CICC, conducted via phone, 11 March 2016.

  • Interview 6 with a representative of an NGO member of the CICC, conducted via phone, 24 April 2017.

  • Interview 7 with a representative of an NGO member of the CICC, conducted via phone, 26 April 2017.

  • Interview 8 with an EU member state official who is member of COJUR-ICC, conducted in his/her capital city, 5 May 2017.

  • Interview 9 with a former EU member state official who was member of COJUR-ICC, conducted in his/her capital city, 9 May 2017.

  • Interview 10 with a former EU member state official who was member of COJUR-ICC, conducted in his/her capital city, 9 May 2017.

  • Interview 11 with a representative of the CICC, conducted via phone, 19 May 2017.

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Costa, O., Müller, P. Une Liaison Transnationale. Comp Eur Polit 17, 696–713 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1057/s41295-018-0121-6

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Keywords

  • CFSP
  • International Criminal Court
  • NGOs
  • Lobbying
  • Interest groups