'Telling Stories about Politics': Europeanization and the EU's Council Working Groups

Julian Clark, A Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)


Recent years have witnessed much debate on Europeanization. Scholarship from a variety of different disciplinary perspectives has been conducted on this topic using the analytical approaches of new institutionalism, including studies made of the interrelations between formal European Union (EU) institutional rules and procedures and informal norms and beliefs on individual actor behaviour. Yet using new institutionalism to examine Europeanization's interconnections with and effects upon the EU's distinctive model of internationalization is not without problems, as recent analyses confirm. Drawing on recent critiques of March and Olsen's logics of appropriateness and consequentiality that together provide the foundations of the new institutionalism, this article examines how political elites mediate Europeanization through their EU decision-making and decision-taking. Using interviews with United Kingdom (UK) negotiators centrally involved in EU trade, agriculture, environment and foreign policy, their personal 'lived' experiences of Europeanization are gauged. This empirical analysis shows that current understandings of March and Olsen's two logics do not adequately capture the juxtaposition of different behavioural reasoning and stances adopted by UK policy elites negotiating in the EU. In turn, the alleged transformative nature of Europeanization is questioned.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-366
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Common Market Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2011


Dive into the research topics of ''Telling Stories about Politics': Europeanization and the EU's Council Working Groups'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this