Setting the 21st centruy EU standard

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This thesis tries to go beyond existing traditional European integration literature by creating a new theoretical synergy based on already established concepts of Euroscepticism’s and Revised NeoFunctionalism. This with the goal to investigate whether the move from a ‘permissive consensus’ towards a ‘constraining dissensus’, due to increased Eurosceptic Counterforces, can be identified in the process of EU decision-making and -outcome regarding the establishment of an European Border and Coast Guard Agency as the EU’s reaction to the European Refugee Crisis. The empirical part of this thesis tests the new theoretical synergy with regard to its explanatory power via a process-tracing case study research design. To investigate the EBCGA, the EU-legislative process via the EC, EP and CEU is examined as to whether this creation came about (solely) from a constellation of the mainstream ‘pro EU-elite consensus’ and ‘External Threat’ assumption, or that it was also initiated from ‘Eurosceptic Counterforces’, or a combined effort of both ideological camps in the EU-institutions. The main findings are that the used theoretical synergy is an useful addition as to understand the current status of EU-integration and the role Eurosceptic Counterforces play in it, making the EBCGA competencies ‘spill-around’. Nevertheless, the pro EU-elite is still holding the predominant role when it comes to EU-decision making though, where the perceived EU-elite adaption to demands of Eurosceptic Counterforces makes the EBCGA look very much like a storm in a teacup.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen