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Politicization and the public interest: When do the elites in Brussels address public interests in EU policy debates?

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  • Iskander De Bruycker

Abstract

Contemporary European studies concur that public pressure and responsiveness have become key ingredients of the EU policy arena. Nonetheless, there is little known about when and how the elites in Brussels articulate public interests in EU policy debates. This article bridges this gap by examining the conditions under which political elites involved in EU legislative procedures address public interests in the news. It is expected that the politicization of EU policy processes stimulates elites to articulate public interests. The dataset consists of 2164 media statements in six European media outlets on a sample of 125 legislative proposals (2008–2010). The results demonstrate that elites address public interests in the media predominantly when issues are publicly salient and attract intensive mobilization by civil society groups. Elites stay silent about public interests when policy processes are crowded with business lobbyists and are of low salience to European citizens.

Suggested Citation

  • Iskander De Bruycker, 2017. "Politicization and the public interest: When do the elites in Brussels address public interests in EU policy debates?," European Union Politics, , vol. 18(4), pages 603-619, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:eeupol:v:18:y:2017:i:4:p:603-619
    DOI: 10.1177/1465116517715525
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Rauh, Christian, 2019. "EU politicization and policy initiatives of the European Commission: the case of consumer policy," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 344-365.
    2. de Wilde, Pieter & Rauh, Christian, 2019. "Going full circle: the need for procedural perspectives on EU responsiveness," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 1737-1748.
    3. Arndt Wonka & Iskander De Bruycker & Dirk De Bièvre & Caelesta Braun & Jan Beyers, 2018. "Patterns of Conflict and Mobilization: Mapping Interest Group Activity in EU Legislative Policymaking," Politics and Governance, Cogitatio Press, vol. 6(3), pages 136-146.
    4. Guri Rosén, 2019. "Proving Their Worth? The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the Members of the European Parliament," Politics and Governance, Cogitatio Press, vol. 7(3), pages 266-278.

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