Towards a New Method of Constitutional Bargaining? The Role and Impact of EU Institutions in the Igc and Convention Method of Treaty Reform
The Federal Trust Constitutional Online Paper Series No. 13/03
21 Pages Posted: 29 Feb 2004
Date Written: April 2003
What is the impact of the change to the Convention-method? My argument is that the shift to the Convention-method has significantly strengthened the possibilities for EU institutions such as the European Parliament and Commission to gain influence in comparison to traditional IGC's. This paper submits that the change in the negotiating context and conduct of treaty reform negotiations in the Convention-method opened more opportunities for influence for both the Commission and especially the European Parliament in comparison to IGC's, whereas the central role of the Council Secretariat was downgraded in the present European Convention. Drawing on mainstream negotiation theory and rational choice institutionalism, a leadership model of European integration is put forward that theorizes on the impact of the change in negotiating context and conduct of negotiations for the ability of actor to translate leadership resources into influence. The explanatory power of the model is demonstrated on developments in treaty reform negotiations since 1985. The conclusions point to the necessity for students of treaty reform of opening up the 'black box' of the actual treaty reform process to investigate how the context and conduct of negotiations matter - enabling us to better explain which actors won in a treaty reform negotiation and why.
Keywords: Convention, intergovernmental conference, integration
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