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Core Executive and Europeanization in Central Europe

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Radoslaw Zubek
Palgrave Macmillan (April 2008)

Given the European Union's comprehensive influence over accession states in Central Europe, the full adoption of the acquis communautaire prior to enlargement seemed a guaranteed outcome. By studying EU rule adoption in Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, this book finds that successful legal alignment was in fact contingent on institutional reform within national core executives. Reinforcement of the core executive vis-à-vis ministerial departments ensured timely and accurate rule adoption, while a weak core executive resulted in uneven and incomplete legal change. Besides contributing to a better understanding of the dynamics of national adaptation during the Eastern enlargement, the book lays the foundations for explaining post-accession compliance in the new EU member states.

Dr Radoslaw Zubek is a research fellow in the European Institute, LSE.

Reviews

"In this exciting study Radoslaw Zubek convincingly shows that the success of EU rule adoption lies at the 'heart' of government. His careful empirical analysis documents the transition process of three Central European member states and reveals how the wish to join the European Union has changed national administrations. His findings are highly relevant to new candidate countries but also to 'old' member states."
Bernard Steunenberg, Professor of Public Administration, Leiden University, The Netherlands

"This book studies the Polish governmental process for complying with commitments to incorporate European Union directives into domestic law. Drawing on existing theories of collective action this book examines how EU compliance contributed to the institutionalization of the political executive (the cabinet and prime minister) in Poland. The book also shows how this process was contextualized by domestic party configurations and ministerial resources. This book addresses an important and understudied topic in the study of Europeanization-the institutional consequences of compliance. It is very systematic and very tightly argued and should be an influential contribution to the literature on transnational forces and their impact on domestic politics."
John Ishiyama, Professor of Political Science, Truman State University

"We know surprisingly little about how core executives are organized and how they function in Central and East Europe. This book fills that gap brilliantly. Not only does it provide fascinating detail from the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland, it provides a strong theoretical basis for why we need to learn more about cabinet-level institutions and their effects as an independent variable on policy outcomes."
Mark Hallerberg, Professor for Public Management and Political Economy, Hertie School of Governance, Germany

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