By Achim Hurrelmann, Steffen Schneider
In keeping with state of the art examine, this edited quantity examines how voters and political elites understand the legitimacy of local integration in Europe and the Americas. It analyses public opinion and political discourse at the ecu, NAFTA and MERCOSUR, arguing that legitimation styles form the advance of neighborhood governance.
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Extra info for The Legitimacy of Regional Integration in Europe and the Americas
Politicization can be understood as alteration in the intensity, form or location of this competitive representative claims-making. It is thus in the discourse of the public sphere that the dominant patterns of delegation and accountability in the EU can be analysed (Trenz and Eder 2004; Saward 2006; Michailidou and Trenz 2013). In this way, ‘the analytical study of politicization of European integration equals the study of how, when, and why competitive representative claims making in the public sphere affects, alters, and recreates the EU’s web of delegation and accountability, thereby potentially changing the legitimacy of the EU polity and the course of European integration’ (de Wilde 2011b: 571).
8 Rankin finds that education and occupation are related to views on trade in general and NAFTA in particular only for some groups (that is, less-skilled workers, especially union members). There is, however, a strong relationship between opposition to NAFTA and some aspects of Rankin’s multidimensional measure of ‘identity’, suggesting that the latter may actually be a more useful predictor of antiregionalist views. This seems an important insight, particularly in light of the way that the regional agenda has shifted from trade and investment issues to an array of ‘post-trade’ issues, which would seem to be even more directly relevant to these ‘identity’ concerns – for instance, immigration, border control or regulatory harmonization.
But this does not mean that politicization automatically strengthens national executives. As the intensity of debate increases, so too do the plurality of actors participating, the variety of viewpoints they articulate and the variety of constituencies they claim to represent (de Wilde 2012a). Besides national executives, we see opposition parties, civil society organizations and EU institutions contributing more to public debates during highly politicized episodes of contention than during politics as usual.
The Legitimacy of Regional Integration in Europe and the Americas by Achim Hurrelmann, Steffen Schneider