Brandsma, Gijs Jan

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He who controls the process controls the outcome? : A reappraisal of the relais actor thesis

2021-04-03, Brandsma, Gijs Jan, Hoppe, Alexander

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Some Are more Equal than Others : Report Allocation to Members of the European Parliament from New Member States

2021, Schädler, Robin, Brandsma, Gijs Jan

Rapporteurs in the European Parliament are influential figures, drafting reports, preparing and collecting amendments and negotiating files on behalf of Parliament as a whole. Previous studies have shown a persistent under‐representation of MEPs from the post‐2004 accession states among rapporteurs. In this study, we demonstrate the evolution of this disparity. Although it no longer exists at the surface, MEPs from accession states are still very much under‐represented in the allocation of files that are negotiated with the Council using trilogues – leaving them mostly with prime responsibility for short and relatively uncomplicated files. This shows that unequal representation has taken on a more subtle guise than before, with ‘west‐European’ MEPs still firmly in the driving seat.

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Accountability in a multi-jurisdictional order

2020, Brandsma, Gijs Jan, Moser, Carolyn

This chapter investigates whether and how the mushrooming of quasi-autonomous agencies at EU level complies with accountability requirements. After outlining the concept of accountability as a mechanism and discussing the functions of accountability, we expose the particularities of accountability in the EU context and, more specifically, in relation to EU agencies. The chapter then explores the effects of Europeanization on (agency) accountability, and closes with some reflections on governance trends and potential accountability patterns. Most notably, we observe an increase of informal cooperation in policy areas that are mainly intergovernmental (i.e. in matters of security and defence, and police cooperation). This increase in informality poses a challenge to multi-level accountability: the absence of formal delegation of decisional and operational powers, or the absence of formal decisions, makes it virtually impossible for national or European accountability forums to hold actors to account.