Hostname: page-component-7479d7b7d-68ccn Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-07-14T23:22:56.292Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Trading control: national fiefdoms in international organizations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  19 November 2013

Mareike Kleine*
Affiliation:
London School of Economics, European Institute, London, UK

Abstract

According to principal-agent theory, states (the principals) delegate the implementation of a legalized agreement to an international organization (the agent). The conventional wisdom about states’ capacity to control international organizations is that differences among the member states impede control and consequently enhance the agent's autonomy, whereas agreement allows for effective control and limited autonomy. Contrary to this conventional wisdom, this article argues that conflicts among states need not always impede effective control. On the contrary: if an international organization comprises a sufficient number of policies, there are gains from the exchange of control over its portfolios that are of special sensitivity to different member states. As a result, international organizations exhibit informal spheres of national control, or national fiefdoms. The article demonstrates the theory's plausibility using the example of the European Union and other international organizations. It has implications for the literature on delegation and informal governance.

Type
Original Papers
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2013 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Abbott, Kenneth W.Snidal, Duncan. 2000. “Hard and Soft Law in International Governance.” International Organization 54(3):421456.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Agence Europe. 1999. “Romano Prodi sets out his intention over reorganisation of European Commission.” June 3.Google Scholar
Ameri, Houshang. 1996. Politics of Staffing the United Nations Secretariat. New York: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
Bendor, J., Glazer, A.Hammond, T.. 2001. “Theories of Delegation.” Annual Review of Political Science 4(1):235269.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Buchanan, JamesTullock, Gordon. 1962. The Calculus of Consent. Logical Foundations of Constitutional Democracy. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft. 1967. Staatssekretärbesprechung am 10. Juli 1967. Kontakte deutscher Dienststellen zu den Bediensteten deutscher Staatsangehörigkeit bei der Kommission, May 31, B102, Band 61703, Bundesarchiv Koblenz.Google Scholar
Cini, Michelle. 1996. The European Commission. Leadership, organisation and culture in the EU administration. Manchester: Manchester University Press.Google Scholar
Cini, Michelle 2000. “Administrative Culture in the European Commission: The Cases of Competition and Environment.” In At the Heart of the Union. Studies of the European Commission, 2nd ed., edited by Neill Nugent, 5172. Houndmills, UK: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Commission des Communautés Européennes. 1991. Rapport de la Task Force Screening à la Commission, March 19, SEC (91) 551.Google Scholar
Commission Européenne. 1994. Reflexions sur l'efficacité de l'institution et de son administration. Rapport établi conformement au mandat confié à M. Philippe Petit-Laurent, November 9.Google Scholar
Commission Européenne 1998. Rapport du Groupe de Reflexion sur la politique du Personnel (Williamson Report), November 6.Google Scholar
Committee of Independent Experts. 1999. Second Report on Reform of the Commission. Analysis of current practice and proposals for tackling mismanagement, irregularities and fraud, vol. I. 10 September 1999.Google Scholar
Coombes, David. 1970. Politics and Bureaucracy in the European Community. A Portrait of the Commission of the E.E.C. London: George Allen and Unwin Ltd.Google Scholar
Dijkstra, Hylke. 2013. “Functionalism, Multiple Principals and the Reform of the Nato Secretariat after the Cold War.” Paper prepared for the annual convention of the International Studies Association, San Francisco, 3–6 April 2013.Google Scholar
Egeberg, MortenHeskestad, Andreas. 2010. “The Denationalization of Cabinets in the European Commission.” Journal of Common Market Studies 48(4):775786.Google Scholar
Eppink, Derk-Jan. 2007. Life of a European Mandarin. Inside the Commission. Tielt, Belgium: Lannoo.Google Scholar
European Communities. 1979. “Proposals for Reform of the Commission of the European Communities and its Services.” Report made at the request of the Commission by an independent review body under the chairmanship of Mr. Dirk Spierenburg, September 24. Accessed October 31, 2012. http://aei.pitt.edu/993/.Google Scholar
European Union. 1999. “Intervention of Prof. Prodi in European Council, June 3.” Accessed October 31, 2012. http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_BIO-99-248_en.htm?locale=en.Google Scholar
Garrett, GeoffreyTsebelis, George. 1996. “An Institutional Critique of Intergovernmentalism.” International Organization 50(2):269299.Google Scholar
Gilligan, Thomas W.Krehbiel, Keith. 1989. “Asymmetric Information and Legislative Rules with a Heterogeneous Committee.” American Journal of Political Science 33(2):459490.Google Scholar
Gilligan, Thomas W.Krehbiel, Keith 1990. “Organization of Informative Committees by a Rational Legislature.” American Journal of Political Science 34(2):531564.Google Scholar
Hawkins, Darren G.Jacoby, Wade. 2006. “How Agents Matter.” In Delegation and Agency in International Organizations, edited by Darren G. Hawkins, David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney, 199228. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Hawkins, Darren, Lake, David, Nielson, DanielTierney, Michael. 2006. “Delegation Under Anarchy: States, International Organizations, and Principal-agent Theory.” In Delegation and Agency in International Organizations, edited by Darren G. Hawkins, David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney, 338. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Hörl, Björn, Warntjen, AndreasWonka, Arndt. 2005. “Built on Quicksand? A Decade of Procedural Spatial Models on EU Legislative Decision-making.” Journal of European Public Policy 12(3):592606.Google Scholar
Johns, Leslie. 2007. “A Servant of Two Masters: Communication and the Selection of International Bureaucrats.” International Organization 61(2):245275.Google Scholar
Johnson, Tana. 2013. “Institutional Design and Bureaucrats’ Impact on Political Control.” The Journal of Politics 75(1):183197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jonah, James O.C. 2008. “Secretariat: Independence and Reform.” In The Oxford Handbook on the United Nations, edited by Sam Daws and Thomas G. Weiss, 160174. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Keohane, Robert O.Martin, Lisa L.. 1995. “The Promise of Institutionalist Theory.” International Security 20(1):3951.Google Scholar
Kiewiet, D. RoderickMcCubbins, Matthew D.. 1991. The Logic of Delegation: Congressional Parties and the Appropriations Process. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Kleine, Mareike. 2013a. Informal Governance in the European Union. How Governments Make International Oganizations Work. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Kleine, Mareike 2013b.Knowing Your Limits: Informal Governance and Judgment in the EU.” The Review of International Organizations 8(2):245264.Google Scholar
Krasner, Stephen D. 1982. “Structural Causes and Regime Consequences: Regimes as Intervening Variables.” International Organization 36(2):185205.Google Scholar
Krehbiel, Keith. 1991. Information and Legislative Organization. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Krenzler, Horst Günther. 1974. “Die Rolle der Kabinette in der Kommission der Europäischen Gemeinschaft.” Europarecht 9(1):7579.Google Scholar
Lake, David A.McCubbins, Mathew D.. 2006. “The Logic of Delegation to International Organizations.” In Delegation and Agency in International Organizations, edited by Darren G. Hawkins, David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney, 341368. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laver, MichaelShepsle, Kenneth A.. 1990. “Coalitions and Cabinet Government.” The American Political Science Review 84(3):873890.Google Scholar
Laver, MichaelShepsle, Kenneth A. 1996. Making and Breaking Governments: Cabinets and Legislatures in Parliamentary Democracies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Lemaignen, Robert. 1964. L'Europe au Berceau. Souvenirs d'un Technocrate. Paris: Plon.Google Scholar
Lyne, Mona M., Nielson, Daniel L.Tierney, Michael J.. 2006. “Who delegates? Alternative Models of Principals in Development aid.” In Delegation and Agency in International Oganizations, edited by Darren G. Hawkins, David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney, 4176. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Majone, Giandomenico. 1994. “The Rise of the Regulatory State in Europe.” West European Politics 17(3):77101.Google Scholar
Marcoux, ChristopherUrpelainen, Johannes. 2013. “Non-compliance by Design: Moribund Hard Law in International Institutions.” The Review of International Organizations 8(2):163191.Google Scholar
Martin, Lanny W.Vanberg, Georg. 2004. “Policing the Bargain: Coalition Government and Parliamentary Scrutiny.” American Journal of Political Science 48(1):1327.Google Scholar
Martin, Lisa L. 2006. “Principal Preferences, Structure, Decision Rules, and Private Benefits: The Case of IMF Conditionality.” In Delegating Authority to International Organizations, edited by Darren G. Hawkins, David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney, 140164. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Martin, Lisa L.Simmons, Beth. 1998. “Theories and Empirical Studies of International Institutions.” International Organization 52(4):729757.Google Scholar
McCubbins, Mathew D., Noll, Roger G.Weingast, Barry R.. 1987. “Administrative Procedures as Instruments of Political Control.” Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization 3(2):243277.Google Scholar
McCubbins, Mathew D., Noll, Roger G.Weingast, Barry R. 1989. “Structure and Process, Politics and Policy: Administrative Arrangements and the Political Control of Agencies.” Virginia Law Review 75(2):431482.Google Scholar
McCubbins, Mathew D.Schwartz, Thomas. 1984. “Congressional Oversight Overlooked: Police Patrols versus Fire Alarms.” American Journal of Political Science 28(1):165179.Google Scholar
McKeown, Timothy J. 2009. “How US Decision-makers Assessed their Control of Multilateral Organizations, 1957-1982.” The Review of International Organizations 4(3):269291.Google Scholar
Mearsheimer, John. 1994/1995. The False Promise of International Institutions.” International Security 19(3):549.Google Scholar
Meron, Theodor. 1977. The United Nations Secretariat. Toronto: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
Meron, Theodor 1981. “In RE Rosescu and the Independence of the International Civil Service.” American Journal of International Law 75(4):910925.Google Scholar
Meron, Theodor 1981-1982. The Role of the Executive Heads.” NYU Journal of Internaitonal Law and Politics 14:861869.Google Scholar
Michelmann, Hans J. 1978. “Multinational Staffing and Organizational Functioning in the Commission of the European Communities.” International Organization 32(2):477496.Google Scholar
Moravcsik, Andrew. 1998. The Choice for Europe. Social Purpose and State Power from Messina to Maastricht. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Nielson, Daniel L.Tierney, Michael J.. 2003. “Delegation to International Organizations: Agency Theory and World Bank Environmental Reform.” International Organization 57(2):241276.Google Scholar
Nugent, Neill. 2010. The Government and Politics of the European Union, 7th ed., Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Page, Edward C. 1997. People Who Run Europe. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
Peterson, John. 2010. “Mission? Gestion? Cabinets in the Barroso Commission.” Paper prepared for presentation at the Political Studies Association Conference in Edinburgh, April 1.Google Scholar
Pevehouse, Jon, Nordstrom, TimothyWarnke, Kevin. 2004. “The Correlates of War 2 International Governmental Organizations Data Version 2.0.” Conflict Management and Peace Science 21(2):101119.Google Scholar
Pollack, Mark A 1997. “Delegation, Agency and Agenda Setting in the European Community.” International Organization 51(1):99134.Google Scholar
Pollack, Mark A 2003. The Engines of European Integration. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Poullet, EdouardDeprez, Gérard. 1976. Struktur und Macht der EG-Kommission. Die Kommission im System der Europäischen Gemeinschaft. Bonn: Europa Union Verlag.Google Scholar
Rivlin, Benjamin. 1993. “The Changing International Political Climate and the Secretary-General.” In The Challenging Role of the UN Secretary-General, edited by Benjamin Rivlin and Leon Gordenker, 321. Westport: Praeger.Google Scholar
Ross, George. 1994. “Inside The Delors Cabinet.” Journal of Common Market Studies 32(4):499523.Google Scholar
Scharpf, Fritz W. 1988. “The Joint-Decision Trap: Lessons From German Federalism ad European Integration.” Public Administration 66(3):239278.Google Scholar
Schneider, Christina J.Johannes, Urpelainen. 2013. Partisan Heterogeneity and International Cooperation: The Case of the European Development Fund.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 57.Google Scholar
Seidel, Katja. 2009. “Actors and Ideas: Tracing Continuities in the European Agricultural Policy.” In The Road to a United Europe: Interpretations of the Process of European Integration, edited by Morten Rasmussen and Knudsen Ann-Christina, 289304. Brussels: P.I.E. Peter Lang.Google Scholar
Shepsle, Kenneth A.Weingast, Barry R.. 1987. “The Institutional Foundations of Committee Power.” American Political Science Review 81(1):85104.Google Scholar
Siotis, Jean. 1964. “Some Problems of European Secretariats.” Journal of Common Market Studies 2(3):222250.Google Scholar
Stone, Randall W. 2009. “Institutions, Power, and Interdependence.” In Power, Interdependence, and Nonstate Actors in World Politics, edited by Helen V. Milner and Andrew Moravcsik. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Stone, Randall W 2011. Controlling Institutions. International Organizations and the Global Economy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thies, Michael F. 2001. “Keeping Tabs on Partners: The Logic of Delegation in Coalition Governments.” American Journal of Political Science 45(3):580598.Google Scholar
Thompson, Alexander. 2006. “Coercion Through IOs: The Security Council and the Logic of Information Transmission.” International Organization 60(1):134.Google Scholar
Thomson, Robert. 2008. “National Actors in International Organizations: The Case of the European Commission.” Comparative Political Studies 41(2):169192.Google Scholar
Tullock, Gordon. 1981. “Why So Much Stability?Public Choice 37(2):189202.Google Scholar
Urpelainen, Johannes. 2012. “Unilateral Influence on International Bureaucrats: An International Delegation Problem.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 56(4):704735.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
US State Department. 2009. “USNATO Guidance: Nato Reform Senior I.S. Positions, 10 June 2009.” Accessed June 30, 2013. https://www.wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/09STATE59968_a.html.Google Scholar
Voeten, Erik. 2001. “Outside Options and the Logic of Security Council Action.” American Political Science Review 95(4):845858.Google Scholar
Weingast, Barry R.Marshall, William J.. 1988. “The Industrial Organization of Congress; or, Why Legislatures, Like Firms, Are Not Organized as Markets.” Journal of Political Economy 96(1):132163.Google Scholar
Wonka, Arndt. 2007. “Technocratic and independent? The appointment of European Commissioners and its Policy Implications.” Journal of European Public Policy 14(2):169189.Google Scholar
Wonka, Arndt 2008. Die Europäische Kommission. Supranationale Bürokratie oder Agent der Mitgliedstaaten?. Baden-Baden: Nomos.Google Scholar
Yi-chon, XuWeller, Patrick. 2004. The Governance of World Trade. International Civil Servants and the GATT/WTO. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
Ziring, Lawrence, Riggs, Rovert EdwonPlano, Jack C.. 2000. The United Nations: International Organization and World Politics. Fort Worth: Harcourt Publishers.Google Scholar