EU better regulation: two publications
In December 2018, a jubilee seminar took place to celebrate the first five years of EUROPAL.
A digest of the contributions has now appeared in the form of a concise edited volume, published in collaboration with the Discussion Paper Series of the Center for European Integration Studies of the University of Bonn, edited by Henri de Waele and Ellen Mastenbroek. An online copy can be perused here (pdf, 637 kB).
Better Regulation has been a well-known concept in EU law and policy for already quite some time. It was adopted as a specific pledge by the European Commission led by Jean-Claude Juncker (2014-2019). The Discussion Paper contains a selection of the contributions that were delivered during the EUROPAL seminar, subjecting the Better Regulation programme to a critical scrutiny from both an academic and a practical perspective. One of the key aims has been to challenge vested assumptions and advance the existing knowledge base. The chapters assembled in the volume offer thematic as well as sectoral contributions, enabling readers to broaden their insights in a succinct fashion, and inspect the multifarious dimensions of the problématique from up close and afar.
A related publication has been accepted for publication in the journal Policy Sciences. In this article, Stijn van Voorst and Ellen Mastenbroek describe and explain the variant quality of ex-post legislative evaluations by the European Commission. They show that such evaluations typically apply a robust methodology, while the clarity of scope, accuracy of data and the foundations of their conclusions are problematic. The variance in this quality is mainly explained by the type of evaluator: EPL evaluations conducted by external actors are of higher quality than evaluations conducted internally by the Commission. With an eye on learning and accountability, the authors argue that the limited quality of the EPL evaluations studied is worrying: doubts about evaluations’ quality may hinder their credibility and use, and ultimately the legitimacy of the Commission’s evaluation system. They therefore recommend the Commission to outsource its EPL evaluations even more rigorously than it does today.
- Van Voorst, S. van, and Mastenbroek, E. (accepted for publication). Evaluations as a decent knowledge base? Describing and explaining the quality of the European Commission’s ex-post legislative evaluations. Policy Sciences.