The executive branch of government in Europe is being gradually transformed in several significant respects. First, executive power has been continuously strengthened at the EU level in the form of the European Commission, EU-level agencies and diplomatic and military staff in the Union Council secretariat. Second, EU executive bodies relate directly to (regulatory) authorities at the national level in charge of applying (and partly preparing) EU laws and programmes, partly circumventing ministerial departments. Thus, parts of national administrations become parts of an integrated and multi-level Union administration as well as parts of national executives. Such a system with multiple political masters raises delicate questions about political steering and accountability. This book focuses on this fascinating development both from a political science and a legal perspective, encompassing the consolidation of the supranational executive as well as its relationships with its ‘partners’ at the national level.
This book was published as a special issue of West European Politics.
1. Introduction Zsolt Enyedi and Kevin Deegan-Krause
2. The education cleavage – the Danish case study in comparative European perspective Rune Stubager
3. Explaining the establishment of a new political force: The social structural roots of Green politics Martin Dolezal
4. The regional cleavage in Western Europe: The role of social structure, value orientations and territorial identities for explaining the impact of region on party choice Oddbjorn Knutsen
5. Cleavage and ideological voting across generations: effects of religion, class and left-right on the vote in different age cohorts Wouter van der Brug
6. Freezing? The Impact of Structural vs. Value Cleavages on the Stabilization of Party Systems Gabor Toka and Tanja Gosselin
7. Reshaping of Class Alliances: How Welfare Regimes and Responses to Deindustrialization Reshape the Social Base of Party Voting in Advanced Industrial Economies Andrija Henjak
8. New Cultural Divides, Denationalization, and the Two-Dimensional Political Space in Western Europe Simon Bornschier
9. Dimensionality in Western Europe: Concepts and Empirical Findings Heather Stoll
10. The "Grand Debate" on dealignment and realignment Geoffrey Evans, Mark Franklin, Herbert Kitschelt and Hanspeter Kriesi
11. Conclusion Kevin Deegan-Krause and Zsolt Enyedi