• Morten Egeberg
Part of the Palgrave Studies in European Union Politics book series (PSEUP)


We have in this book argued that the EU does not only add considerably to already existing patterns of multilevel governance taking place in and around a huge number of international governmental organizations (IGOs), but that it in addition makes a unique difference to executive organization and politics in Europe. The uniqueness first of all relates to the existence of the European Commission which is the only multipurpose executive body at the international level that is organizationally separated from councils of ministers. Since this institution also in practice has the potential to act relatively independently as an executive, this means that the executive branch of EU member states has got a new and higher layer of executive organization to relate to. Second, we have argued that the peculiar functional division of labour that exists between the Commission and the Council triggers unique centrifugal forces at the very heart of national governments. The Commission is in need of expertise for drafting new policy proposals and it depends on reliable partners for ensuring that EU decisions are properly implemented at the national level. Both seem to be found among national (regulatory) agencies that over the last years increasingly have been organized at arm’s length from their respective ministries. Thus, we might see a genuine multilevel Union administration emerging. Such developments indicate what we will denote as a profound transformation of executive politics within the EU, and, as shown, within the European Economic Area (EEA) as well.


National Government National Agency European Environment Agency European Parliament European Economic Area 
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© Morten Egeberg 2006

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  • Morten Egeberg

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