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Journal Article

Reform in the Shadow of Community Law: Highly Regulated Economic Sectors


Schmidt,  Susanne K.
Institutioneller Wandel im gegenwärtigen Kapitalismus, MPI for the Study of Societies, Max Planck Society;

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Schmidt, S. K. (2005). Reform in the Shadow of Community Law: Highly Regulated Economic Sectors. German Politics, 14(2), 157-173. doi:10.1080/09644000500154102.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0012-4E4B-6
Characteristics of the German model of managed capitalism were particularly pronounced in highly regulated sectors and the utilities. Nevertheless, farreaching reforms were enacted. Taking the examples of telecommunications,
electricity, insurance and road haulage regulation, this study examines the locked-in nature of domestic sector regulations. Demonstrating the importance of the impact of European policies for domestic reforms, it shows how this
‘top down’ pressure was combined with attempts of national actors to use the European context as an opportunity structure to push their interests. Consequently, domestic reforms often went beyond European requirements. More recently, the German crafts law has been reformed, which showed again the many institutional avenues to veto reforms in the German system. A new initiative by the European Commission to foster service liberalisation might
thus become an opportunity to push for policy change once again.