Understanding Integration of New Policy Tasks in EU Policy Fields

R.M. den Uijl, Duncan J. Russel, Laura Devito

Research output: Chapter in Book / Report / Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review


Integration of relatively new policy tasks like climate adaptation into established European Union (EU) policy fields is insufficiently understood in the academic literature. This paper proposes a framework to evaluate the integration of climate adaptation into the sectoral policy making of the European Commission, particularly following the publication of the EU Adaptation Strategy (in 2013). The paper uses a framework including micro, meso and macro level, and borrows from the new institutionalism perspectives of rational choice, historical and sociological institutionalism to identify and explain barriers and enablers of integration. It focuses on integration in the key sector of coastal and marine policy, and draws from data collected through systemic document review and interviews with key informants. It finds that the combined perspectives of the new institutionalisms with the scale levels of micro, meso and macro are useful to explain the integration of adaptation into sectoral policy-making. The findings show that integration of climate adaptation is still early stage. The integration process appears to be largely dependent on institutional dynamics at the EU-level combined with how member states and wider sectoral stakeholders engage with adaptation concerns. In particular ambivalence of a selection of member states and a lack of perceived urgency among sectoral stakeholders has tended to hamper the integration of adaptation goals.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPanel: Environmental Policy in the EU
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventECPR SGEU Conference: The 8th Pan-European Conference on the European Union - Trento, Italy
Duration: 15 Jun 201618 Jun 2016


ConferenceECPR SGEU Conference

Cite this