The Normative Power of the EU and Contentious Europeanization: The Case of Judicial Politics

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Series Details Volume 36, Number 6, Pages 533-548
Publication Date September 2014
ISSN 0703-6337
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This article explores the relationship between Europeanization and EU integration in the field of judicial politics. It claims that the process of Europeanization engenders contention which creates demands for increased supranational governance. To illustrate this duality, the article draws on the waves of reforms aiming to consolidate the independence of the judiciary in the new Member States of the EU.

What is at stake from a political and normative point of view is the post-conditionality debate, the discussion around the Copenhagen dilemma and — conversely — the need to define at the EU level a set of effective mechanisms and instruments of compliance. Empirically, the article discloses the dead angles of Europeanization and reveals that policy implementation in the Copenhagen framework creates functional and political pressures for further integration. In the field of judicial politics, the power of the EU oscillates between spill-over and spill-back.

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