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date: 30 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses on EU public law—that is, on the structural and procedural law of public institutions, as well as their relation to each other and to private actors. It seeks to answer a specific question: whether, from a historical perspective, EU public law is best viewed as an extension of international, constitutional, or administrative law. It opts primarily for the latter rubric, setting out a historiographical theory for understanding the process of European integration as an extension of the development of modern administrative governance on the national level over the course of the twentieth century. By linking European governance to the development of administrative governance, one can begin to see the basic truth in Alan Milward’s famous, though controversial, assertion that European integration is really just ‘one more stage in the long evolution of the European state’.

Keywords: administrative governance, European integration, European Union, functionalism, mediated legitimacy, post-war constitutional settlement, pre-commitment, principal–agent theory, public law, supranationalism

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