Choosing an Influential Agenda Setter: The Appointment of the Commission in the European Union

46 Pages Posted: 22 Jan 2016  

Christophe Crombez

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies; KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FEB)

Martijn Huysmans

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE)

Wim Van Gestel

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE)

Date Written: January 2016

Abstract

This paper presents a game-theoretical spatial analysis of Commission appointment in the European Union (EU). In the model the European Parliament (EP) and the member states in the Council look ahead and consider the policy outcomes that result from the appointment of alternative Commissions. In contrast to earlier work we assume that the EP and the member states have incomplete information on the consequences of EU policies, whereas the Commission acquires private information on the link between policies and outcomes. As a result, we generate new insights in the Commission’s appointment. In particular, we find that the increased use of co-decision in the legislative process gives the Council an incentive to appoint a Commission that is closer to the EP, because the EP then trusts the Commission more. Thus this theory sheds new light on the so-called Spitzenkandidaten Coup that preceded the appointment of the Juncker Commission in 2014.

Keywords: European Union, European Commission, Agenda Setting, Incomplete Information

Suggested Citation

Crombez, Christophe and Huysmans, Martijn and Van Gestel, Wim, Choosing an Influential Agenda Setter: The Appointment of the Commission in the European Union (January 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2720259

Christophe Crombez (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FEB) ( email )

Naamsestraat 69
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

Martijn Huysmans

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) ( email )

Naamsestraat 69
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

Wim Van Gestel

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) ( email )

Naamsestraat 69
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

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