The book addresses the impact of the European Union (EU) on subnational mobilization in small unitary states.
Located at the intersection of contributions from the literatures on multilevel governance and Europeanization, this book offers a new theoretical framework to account for state rescaling processes in small unitary states. By means of a comparative analysis of eight small unitary states in Europe, this book shows that the impact of the EU on subnational mobilization is filtered through domestic mediating factors which can lead to three possible outcomes: decentralization, recentralization or no change. The book offers a balanced combination of analytical clarity and the richness of empirical accounts in a wide diversity of case studies. It sheds a new light on the ‘hybrid nature’ of the European polity and demonstrates that member state governments have remained the most important pieces of the European puzzle. Overall, it arrives at two conclusions: first, that we are witnessing a ‘transformation of the state’ rather than its demise; second, the notion of a ‘Europe of the Regions’ in small unitary states was no more than a ‘damp squib’.
The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of the journal, Regional & Federal Studies.
Introduction: The European Union, subnational mobilization and state rescaling in small unitary states: a comparative analysis
Sandrina Antunes and John Loughlin
1. Subnational Sweden, the national State and the EU
2. Finnish regional governance structures in flux: reform processes between European and domestic influences
3. Europe and the rescaling of domestic territorial governance in Ireland
4. Subnational mobilization and the reconfiguration of central-local relations in the shadow of Europe: the case of the Dutch decentralized unitary state
Martijn Groenleer and Frank Hendriks
5. With or Without you: mobilization strategies of Portuguese regional authorities in the European Union
Sandrina Antunes and José Magone
6. Checking the mechanics of Europeanization in a centralist state: the case of Greece Nikolaos Komninos Hlepas
7. Empowering through regional funds? The impact of Europe on subnational governance in the Czech Republic
Jakub Lysek and Dan Ryšavý
8. Institutionalization of subnational governance in Estonia: European impacts and domestic adaptations
Georg Sootla and Kersten Kattai
Conclusion: State rescaling and a ‘Europe of the Regions’ in small unitary states: a damp squib?
John Loughlin and Sandrina Antunes