Chapter

UNDERSTANDING INSTITUTIONAL SOCIALIZATION

Roger Scully

in Becoming Europeans?

Published in print August 2005 | ISBN: 9780199284320
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603365 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199284326.003.0004
UNDERSTANDING INSTITUTIONAL SOCIALIZATION

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This chapter seeks to develop a coherent explanation of the circumstances in which political actors operating within EU institutions might be subject to socialisation processes that shape their attitudes and behaviour in a more integrationist direction. Any such explanation, it is argued, must depend on two core elements: an understanding of the nature of the socialising experience to be undergone; and assumptions about the individuals who will undergo this experience. The chapter then goes on to discuss the likely implications of this framework for socialisation processes in the EP. The discussion shows that the extent to which MEPs become divorced from the national political scene has been substantially over-stated. It is argued that a rationalist understanding of MEPs’ core political goals — assumed to be policy, office and (re)-election — would predict that European Parliamentarians should prove relatively immune to any pressures to ‘go native’.

Keywords: socialising experiences; actor goals; rationalist perspective

Chapter.  6656 words. 

Subjects: European Union

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