The Evolution of Legislative Power-Sharing in the EU Multilevel System

  • Katharina HolzingerEmail author
  • Jan Biesenbender
Part of the Comparative Territorial Politics book series (COMPTPOL)


While governance in multilevel systems involves many processes, legislation at the upper jurisdictional level is at its core. The lower levels of jurisdiction are represented at the upper level through a second legislative chamber. The exact competences of the second versus the first chamber are indicative of the degree of integration of a multilevel system. This chapter explores the evolution of the relationship of the two chambers in the European Union: the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament. The authors develop an empirical approach to evaluate the gradual change of their relative legislative influence. The Consultation, Cooperation and Codecision II procedures are analysed for the period from 1976–2009, covering the most important changes. Parliament has clearly gained influence on legislation through Cooperation and, most prominently, Codecision II. Whereas a unanimous Council could mostly have its will in Consultation, Parliament and Council are on equal footing in Codecision II.


European Union EU institutions Legislation Multilevel Power-sharing 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Politics and Public AdministrationUniversity of KonstanzKonstanzGermany
  2. 2.Leibniz-GemeinschaftBerlinGermany

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