The CEDI Working Paper Series offers a forum for analysis, commentary and debate on contemporary European politics. Experienced as well as early career researchers and students from different academic disciplines publish first outcomes of CEDI research activities, conference and workshop proceedings, as well as international and national conference papers of CEDI team members.
The papers are published in a Joint Working Paper Series with the Mainz Papers on International and European Politics (MPIEP).
CEDI Working Paper No. 6
"Soft" Governance in European Energy Policy. The "Winter Package" for the Energy Union of the European Commission
by Michèle Knodt, Marc Ringel
ABSTRACT:The new governance mechanisms of the European energy policy proposed by the European Commission in its “Winter Package” will contribute to a redefinition of the European energy and climate governance. This contribution reviews the proposal, its supporting documents and overall stakeholder positions along the criteria of governance efficiency, effectiveness and acceptance in order to assess its ability to support the European energy and climate goals. We find that the proposed governance sums up to a densely-meshed coordination of policies between the European level and Member States. Compared to the present governance, the enhanced mechanism can draw on significant synergies and reduce administrative costs. Our review of stakeholder positions shows a solid acceptance for enhanced coordination. Nonetheless our review identifies some potential flaws in terms of governance effectiveness: With unspecific or not further nationally attributed targets for 2030, the underlying governance structure can get blurred easily. Second, the proposal foresees in some cases direct corrective action of the European level, in the case Member States lag ambition. This surpasses the method of open coordination or could be seen as a case of “harder” soft governance which at the same time conflicts with article 194(2) TFEU (right of Member States to determine their national energy mix). Finally, the local level is left out. The proposal misses to link to on-going local actions like the Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans (SECPs) to the overall governance structure.
CEDI Working Paper No. 5
Boundaries of European Solidarity - Lessons from Migration and Energy Policy
by Michèle Knodt, Anne Tews
ABSTRACT: The working paper addresses the significance, reality and boundaries of solidarity in the European multi-level system. It analyses the requirements for solidarity and the role that solidarity plays in European multi-level governance. We present an effort to conceptualize solidarity in the European multi-level system and to develop a typology of different forms of solidarity. The working paper focuses on the type of intergovernmental solidarity between member states and explores possible boundaries for solidary acts.We illustrate our theoretical and conceptual considerations with insights from two different EU policy fields: energy and migration policy. Both policy fields are characterized by a fundamental lack of solidary actions and thus give some indications for possible boundaries of European solidarity.
CEDI Working Paper No. 4
Studying EU Peace Mediation: Theoretical and Empirical Perspectives
by Julian Bergmann, Friedrich Plank, Arne Niemann
ABSTRACT: With the »Concept on Strengthening EU Mediation and Dialogue Capacities« adopted in 2009, the EU aims to further develop its capabilities in the field of peace mediation, building also on various mediation experiences made by EU institutions and actors in different conflict regions. Yet, the academic literature has not paid much attention to the EU’s involvement in mediation or mediation support activities. To develop a better theoretical and empirical understanding of EU peace mediation, the Unit of International Politics of the Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz organized a workshop on »The EU as Actor in International Mediation - Theoretical and Empirical Perspectives« which took place in November 2015 in Mainz. The working paper discusses this project in the light of the current research literature and reflects on the results of the presentations and discussions of the workshop.
CEDI Working Paper No. 3
Controversy in the Garden of Concepts: Rethinking the “Politicisation” of the EU
by Niilo Kauppi, Kari Palonen, Claudia Wiesner
ABSTRACT: In this article, we suggest a novel conceptual framework for understanding and analyzing EU politicisation. Recent studies on EU politicisation argue that the post-Maastricht era led to the politicisation of EU integration via an increasing citizens’ dissatisfaction. Until then, politics had played only a minor role. Contrary to this account, we argue that European integration has been from the beginning a political process, but an unusual one. To capture its uniqueness we introduce the concepts of politisation as a precondition of politicization and of politification as a depoliticised modality of politicisation. Politicisation is then not something new to EU integration but rather it is constitutive of EU integration itself. We further argue that understanding politicisation requires taking a closer look at its relationship to “politics” or “political”, as it is essential to spell out the respective understanding of this key concept – Grundbegriff in Reinhart Koselleck’s sense. The interpretation of what is considered as politicisation depends on the interpretation of what is politics/political. We argue in favour of rethinking the concept of politics and its relationship to politicisation in terms that avoid spatial and functional metaphors. To capture the power dynamics involved in European integration, we aim at an understanding of EU politicisation that is at once more historical and based on an actor-oriented perspective on the political. On this basis we discuss the main conceptual weaknesses of studies on EU politicization and conclude by developing some points of our alternative conception.
CEDI Working Paper No. 2
Lost in Translation: Human and Minority Rights - Discourses of the European Union and Russia
by Petra Guasti and Arne Niemann
ABSTRACT: The legal documents drafted in April 2013 to enable the EU’s accession to the European Charter of Human Rights represented a further confirmation of the unprecedented victory of democracy and human rights in Europe. However, with the outbreak and evolution of the armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine in 2014, the victory of democracy and human rights in Europe is less
straightforward. The conflict highlights the clash over the understanding of human rights between the two major political powers on the European continent – the EU and Russia. This article complements quantitative data on human rights violations with qualitative discourse analysis of human rights frames. The highly contentious case of the Russian-speaking minority in Latvia is selected as a test case. Presented analysis shows that the Russian-speaking minority in Latvia is lost in translation – caught between the Latvian notion of non-citizens as a legally justified statelessness and the Russian notion of compatriots, victims of aggressive Western expansion. Neither the Latvian nor the Russian official discourse has recognized the Russianspeaking minority as an autonomous entity; rather for both the minority issue is instrumentalized for domestic and foreign policy reasons - identity is instrumentalized and securitized. The EU, whose hands are tied, is largely absent. The relationship between the actors is polarized and antagonistic, and as the situation of Ukraine shows, has further potential for violence.
CEDI Working Paper No. 1
Perceptions and Challenges of EU-China Energy Cooperation
by Michèle Knodt, Nadine Piefer, Suet-Yi Lai
ABSTRACT: China and the European Union are the world’s largest importers of natural resources, which make both of them highly dependent on other countries. Both are, hence, greatly challenged on the issue of energy and closely interlinked also on climate change, both areas which will demand changes in energy production, consumption patterns etc. These challenges could lead to competition between the two actors in the request for resources. At the same time, such a common situation could entail great potential for a closer cooperation. However despite the latest summit between the two partners, little indicates for such closer cooperation.
Thus, the aim of this paper is to understand which mutual perceptions the EU and China have in energy policy. How does the external energy governance of the EU and China function? Which mutual perceptions do both sides hold and which controversies exist?