Policy-Making and Diversity in Europe

Policy-Making and Diversity in Europe

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Adrienne Héritier
Cambridge University Press, 02/12/1999
EAN 9780521652964, ISBN10: 0521652960

Paperback, 120 pages, 23.4 x 15.5 x 1.3 cm

Policy-Making and Diversity in Europe examines the European polity and its policy-making processes. In particular, it asks how an institution which is so riddled with veto points manages to be such an active and aggressive policy maker. Héritier argues that the diversity of actors’ interests and the consensus-forcing nature of European institutions would almost inevitably stall the decision-making process, were it not for the existence of creative informal strategies and policy-making patterns. Termed by the author ‘subterfuge’, these strategies prevent political impasses and ‘make Europe work’. The book examines the presence of subterfuge in the policy domains of market-making, the provision of collective goods, redistribution and distribution. Subterfuge is seen to reinforce the primary functions of the European polity: the accommodation of diversity, policy innovation and democratic legitimation. Professor Héritier concludes that the use of subterfuge to reconcile unity with diversity and competition with co-operation is the greatest challenge facing European policy-making.