Abstract and Keywords
This article examines multilevel governance (MLG) in the EU. MLG is the brainchild of a period of optimism over the power of integration and the leading role of the Commission in transforming the EU political order. It remains highly questionable whether the buoyant mood prevailing in Brussels during the heroic era of launching the structural and cohesion funds has been vindicated by the developments that ensued in the 1990s and 2000s. Early expectations of a strengthening of sub-national authorities at the expense of national governments proved exaggerated. The process was reversed even in EU structural policy, where renationalization has been a powerful trend, especially since the Eastern enlargement. Nonetheless, as a theoretical approach, MLG offers a potent conceptual framework for understanding the wide-range EU transformation since the launch of the single market project.
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