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New Modes of Governance in the EU: Common Objectives versus National Preferences

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  • Citi, Manuele
  • Rhodes, Martin

Abstract

The emergence in the European Union of new modes of governance (NMG) such as the Open Method of Coordination (OMC) has produced an enormous literature that falls into four broad categories: a theoretical approach seeks to explain why such methods emerged and locates them in existing theories of European integration, policy-making and institutional change; a strongly normative approach extols the non-hierarchical, deliberative virtues of NMG and ‘soft’ law and prioritizes the potential of the OMC as a font of ‘social learning’; a more empirical approach assesses new modes in operation across different policy areas and countries; and a more critical approach assesses the claims made on the OMC’s behalf as an effective instrument of policy making. Apart from our concern to critically review this literature, our aim is also to focus in on one of its greatest deficiencies: the absence, hitherto, of a comprehensive, multi-level framework for analysis, capable of specifying the conditions under which OMC practices are likely to produce a convergence of member state policies on common objectives. In doing so we also bring into our account a parallel literature – on policy diffusion and learning – that is frequently referred to by studies of the OMC and other new modes of governance but is rarely integrated systematically into their analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • Citi, Manuele & Rhodes, Martin, 2007. "New Modes of Governance in the EU: Common Objectives versus National Preferences," European Governance Papers (EUROGOV) 1, CONNEX and EUROGOV networks.
  • Handle: RePEc:erp:eurogo:p0011
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Nina Mcguinness & Conor O'Carroll, 2010. "Benchmarking Europe's Lab Benches: How Successful has the OMC been in Research Policy?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48, pages 293-318, March.
    2. Eva G. Heidbreder, 2009. "Structuring the European Administrative Space - Channels of EU Penetration and Mechanisms ofNational Change," KFG Working Papers p0005, Free University Berlin.
    3. Katharina Zimmermann, 2016. "Local Responses to the European Social Fund: A Cross-City Comparison of Usage and Change," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(6), pages 1465-1484, November.
    4. Carlos Mendez, 2011. "The Lisbonization of EU Cohesion Policy: A Successful Case of Experimentalist Governance?," European Planning Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 519-537, March.

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