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European Union regulatory politics in the shadow of the WTO: WTO rules as frame of reference and rhetorical device

Ferdi De Ville (UGent)
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Organization
Abstract
This contribution asks how the World Trade Organization (WTO) affects European Union (EU) regulatory politics. While WTO rules have no direct effect, authors who take a rational choice institutionalist perspective argue that these rules are enforced domestically through the mobilization of exporters triggered by the WTO dispute settlement system. This contribution challenges the plausibility of this argument and offers an alternative perspective rooted in historical and discursive institutionalism. It contends that WTO rules act as both a frame of reference influencing actors’ perceptions of the scope of legitimate policy outcomes and as a rhetorical device that may be used by actors in domestic political battles over regulatory policy decisions. Two recent decisions on EU regulation with international trade effects are process-traced to demonstrate the value of the alternative perspective against the rational choice institutionalism model: Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) and the proposed ‘carbon border tax’ in the framework of the EU emissions trading scheme post-2013.
Keywords
European Union, historical institutionalism, rational choice institutionalism, trade policy, World Trade Organization, discursive institutionalism, HISTORICAL INSTITUTIONALISM, Compliance, AGREEMENTS, GLOBALIZATION, WORLD-TRADE, INTERNATIONAL-TRADE

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
De Ville, Ferdi. 2012. “European Union Regulatory Politics in the Shadow of the WTO: WTO Rules as Frame of Reference and Rhetorical Device.” Journal of European Public Policy 19 (5): 700–718.
APA
De Ville, F. (2012). European Union regulatory politics in the shadow of the WTO: WTO rules as frame of reference and rhetorical device. JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY, 19(5), 700–718.
Vancouver
1.
De Ville F. European Union regulatory politics in the shadow of the WTO: WTO rules as frame of reference and rhetorical device. JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY. 2012;19(5):700–18.
MLA
De Ville, Ferdi. “European Union Regulatory Politics in the Shadow of the WTO: WTO Rules as Frame of Reference and Rhetorical Device.” JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY 19.5 (2012): 700–718. Print.
@article{2055681,
  abstract     = {This contribution asks how the World Trade Organization (WTO) affects European Union (EU) regulatory politics. While WTO rules have no direct effect, authors who take a rational choice institutionalist perspective argue that these rules are enforced domestically through the mobilization of exporters triggered by the WTO dispute settlement system. This contribution challenges the plausibility of this argument and offers an alternative perspective rooted in historical and discursive institutionalism. It contends that WTO rules act as both a frame of reference influencing actors{\textquoteright} perceptions of the scope of legitimate policy outcomes and as a rhetorical device that may be used by actors in domestic political battles over regulatory policy decisions. Two recent decisions on EU regulation with international trade effects are process-traced to demonstrate the value of the alternative perspective against the rational choice institutionalism model: Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) and the proposed {\textquoteleft}carbon border tax{\textquoteright} in the framework of the EU emissions trading scheme post-2013.},
  author       = {De Ville, Ferdi},
  issn         = {1350-1763},
  journal      = {JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY},
  keyword      = {European Union,historical institutionalism,rational choice institutionalism,trade policy,World Trade Organization,discursive institutionalism,HISTORICAL INSTITUTIONALISM,Compliance,AGREEMENTS,GLOBALIZATION,WORLD-TRADE,INTERNATIONAL-TRADE},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {700--718},
  title        = {European Union regulatory politics in the shadow of the WTO: WTO rules as frame of reference and rhetorical device},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13501763.2011.646781},
  volume       = {19},
  year         = {2012},
}

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