The European Comission - the evolving EU executive

The European Commission, in some ways more similar to a national government than to international institutions, is the object of scrutiny in this paper. On the basis of contrasting theoretical perspectives, the importance of nationality to Commission proceedings is considered; the paper finds the organizational perspective to offer particularly valuable insights in this area.

ARENA Working Paper 30/2002 (html)

Morten Egeberg

This chapter looks at an international institution that has more in common with a national government than with other international organizations. We will first present its tasks, which are rather similar to those of national executives. We then shortly discuss the Commission’s influence in the larger EU system and the role of nationality in Commission decision-making as this is seen from an intergovernmentalist and an institutionalist perspective. In addition, an organizational perspective is presented which says that the role nationality might play is highly contingent upon how the Commission is structured and staffed. Thus, when portraying the different parts of the Commission; the College, the cabinets, the services and the committee system, the focus is always on organizational structure and personnel composition. These portrayals all end with a short discussion on the implications of organization and recruitment for policy processes in the Commission.

Tags: supranationalism, European Commission, organization theory
Published Nov. 9, 2010 10:52 AM