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The Composition of the College of Commissioners : patterns of delegation

[journal article]

Döring, Holger

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Abstract Recent theoretical studies question the view that the European Commission is a preference outlier. This paper addresses this question by discussing the composition of the European College of Commissioners and by focusing on the appointment process. The analysis is based on a data set that contains biographical information for all Commissioners since 1958. The analysis highlights the importance of Commissioners' party affiliation and their previous political positions. Multivariate regression analysis shows that smaller member states have tended to send more high-ranking politicians to the College of Commissioners than have larger member states. However, party affiliation has not become more important as an appointment criterion. What has changed with time has been not the party link but the calibre of positions held by Commissioners before they are appointed to the College.
Keywords delegation of tasks
Classification Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture; European Politics
Free Keywords appointment; European Commission; party politics
Document language English
Publication Year 2007
Page/Pages p. 207-228
Journal European Union Politics, 8 (2007) 2
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)