Jean Monnet Center at NYU School of Law


5. Administrative Reform

Finally, the White Paper was written in the context of the Commission's continuing administrative reform agenda.14 The following also contains a certain amount of contradiction: on the one hand, the Commission is working towards a decentralisation of the implementation of the Community law in order to relieve its own resources. Administrative agencies and the administrations of the Member States are, in particular, to be employed in this. On the other hand, the Commission is currently trying to avoid the loss of power, in every form, that is connected to this. This conflict is only hinted at in the White Paper. Still, the White Paper's most concrete institutional suggestion is related to the abolition of comitology, i.e., the Member States' influence at the level of the law of implementation. This concept becomes very clear through the outline of a co-operative administration in the information about the administrative externalisation. It becomes clear from this that the Commission is also striving for its own organisational power over the national administrations, by which the contribution of the Member States is limited to making both material means and personnel available. Thus, the Commission's administrative ideal consists of an extensive outsourcing of administrative individual questions by obtaining simultaneous complete control over their execution, which can be brought back to the level of the Commission at any time.

Whether or not the Commission's idea corresponds to the functional logic of federal administrative co-operations may remain open in this context. What is at least conspicuous is the lack of precision with which the institutional suggestions are balanced with its own principles. This is true for the criticism of comitology just as it is for the open method of co-ordination (28f.), whose case-by-case application promises neither more responsibility nor more coherence.

14 Suggestion of a Council VO with the statute of executive agencies KOM(2000) 788 endg; suggestion of a Council VO for the implementation of the rules of competition contained in Art. 81 und 82 EGV, KOM(2000) 582 endg.




This site is part of the Academy of European Law online, a joint partnership of the Jean Monnet Center at NYU School of Law and of the Academy of European Law at the European University Institute.
Questions or comments about this site?