Path Dependency in EU Enlargement: Macedonia's Candidate Status from a Historical Institutional Perspective
2009 (English)In: European Foreign Affairs Review, ISSN 1384-6299, Vol. 14, no 1, 89-112 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
This article argues that EU enlargement policy and actions within that field are guided by the logic of path dependency. By studying the decision to confer candidate status on Macedonia in 2005, which was granted despite important shortcomings regarding democracy and rule of law, we can reveal key aspects of the decision-making process regarding the enlargement policy. The Macedonian crisis in 2001 was instrumental in shaping EU enlargement policy as a foreign policy tool to promote peace and stability in the Western Balkans. The peace agreement that ended the conflict, in turn, became an important reference for measuring reform progress in Macedonia. The enlargement policy thus became locked in a path-dependent pattern, where the implementation of the peace agreement from 2001 has become very important. The strong commitments by the EU towards Macedonia are identified as a particularly strong mechanism influencing the path dependent pattern. Where other influential theories cannot explain contradictions between EU Member State voting and preferences, or ignorance of democratic shortcomings, historical institutionalism offers tools to make such theoretical inconsistencies intelligible.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Kluwer Law International , 2009. Vol. 14, no 1, 89-112 p.
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Research subject Political Science
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-98743OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-98743DiVA: diva2:201100