Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

National Party Politics - A Cold House For Europeans?

03.05.2007
Major new research across the EU has found that, even after 50 years of European integration, national party politics remains a relatively cold house for those interested in European affairs. A team of international researchers, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), spent more than three years reviewing party structures in 15 EU Member States.

Their findings in six nations analysed to date, show parties give only limited resources to EU issues, they still treat EU affairs as a matter of foreign policy and EU specialists, including MEPs, tend to be left in the cold when it comes to internal power-politics.

According to Professor Thomas Poguntke and his collaborators from Keele University, the research also questions the role of party ‘elites’ in EU decision-making, particularly those holding Ministerial positions.

“The lack of real interest in European affairs at party level gives those engaged in EU decision-making substantial room for manoeuvre in negotiations“, he says going on to suggest that “these decision-makers are not being held fully accountable for their actions at EU level“.

The process whereby parties adapt to change brought about by EU integration is described as ‘europeanisation’. According to the study, national political parties are not fully engaging in this process for reasons which are both economic and political.

Parties are reticent to create new positions devoted to EU affairs because funds are scarce and they tend to rely on the public purse for these activities. The lack of influence of EU specialists and the increased empowerment of party elites is explained, according to the study, by the fact that decision-making in EU arenas continues to be viewed as a foreign policy matter by most party activists. Also, European integration has not substantially affected the party’s chances of electoral success. Domestic issues continue to dominate electoral contests in most cases and party leaderships continue to maintain a domestic focus in their electoral promises.

While these findings may not surprise those studying British political party structures, the research found similarities in party dynamics in case studies carried out in Austria, France, Germany, Spain and Sweden as well as Britain. The research therefore has important implications for the internal functioning of parties EU-wide and for questions of democratic control, accountability, representation and legitimacy, both at national and EU level.

Annika Howard | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esrc.ac.uk

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Internet use in class tied to lower test scores
16.12.2016 | Michigan State University

nachricht Geographers provide new insight into commuter megaregions of the US
01.12.2016 | Dartmouth College

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists spin artificial silk from whey protein

X-ray study throws light on key process for production

A Swedish-German team of researchers has cleared up a key process for the artificial production of silk. With the help of the intense X-rays from DESY's...

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Breaking the optical bandwidth record of stable pulsed lasers

24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Choreographing the microRNA-target dance

24.01.2017 | Life Sciences

Spanish scientists create a 3-D bioprinter to print human skin

24.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>