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Contribution to Collected Edition

Negative and Positive Integration in the Political Economy of European Welfare States


Scharpf,  Fritz W.
Problemlösungsfähigkeit der Mehrebenenpolitik in Europa, MPI for the Study of Societies, Max Planck Society;

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Scharpf, F. W. (1998). Negative and Positive Integration in the Political Economy of European Welfare States. In M. Rhodes, & Y. Mény (Eds.), The Future of European Welfare: A New Social Contract? (pp. 157-177). Houndmills: Macmillan.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0026-BB83-B
The process of European integration is characterized by a fundamental asymmetry, described accurately by Joseph Weiler (1981) as a dualism between supranational European law and intergovernmental European policy making. As Weiler (1994) points out, political scientists have for too long focused only on aspects of intergovernmental negotiations while largely ignoring the establishment, by judge-made law, of a European legal order with precedence over national law. This omission has kept us from recognizing the politically significant parallel between Weiler’s dualism and the more familiar contrast between ‘negative’ and ‘positive integration’ (Tinbergen, 1965; Rehbinder and Stewart, 1984), that is, between measures increasing market integration (by eliminating restraints on trade and distortions of competition) and common European policies to shape the conditions under which markets operate.