190326 - Courts as Actors in Public Policy: Political Actors or Policy Entrepreneurs
Tuesday 26 March 2019, 12.30-2.30 pm, Sciences Po, Room Goguel, 27 rue Saint-Guillaume, 75007 Paris
Courts are increasingly considered to be political actors, influencing public policy actively and passively, through their rulings. Studies on judicial politics have shown that this influence occurs at different moments in the policy cycle, but seems to be most salient in the implementation phase. At the same time, authors working on judicial politics have compared courts to policy entrepreneurs, who appear particularly active during the agenda-setting phase.
Strikingly, most of the contemporary public policy approaches do not consider courts as prominent actors in policy processes. For example, while policy entrepreneurs are one of the central factors of policy change studied in the Multiple Streams Approach, courts have, up to now, been ignored by the majority of scholars adopting this theoretical frame. The aim of the presentation is to address this research gap, and to determine whether and under which circumstances courts can be perceived as policy entrepreneurs. Starting from an in-depth analysis of the mainstream MSF literature, this article aims at identifying the main conceptual problems linked to this endeavour. The possibilities and limits of using the notion of judicial policy entrepreneurs in studies of judicial politics will be presented through a series of empirical examples on the Court of Justice of the European Union in the agenda setting process of the political system of the EU.
Speaker: Sabine Saurugger, Sciences Po Grenoble
Sabine Saurugger is a Professor of political science and Research Dean at Sciences Po Grenoble. Since 2016, she holds a visiting professorship at the College de Bruges.Her research focuses on interest groups, theories of European integration, European public policies and the politics of law. Most recently she analysed the impact of economic and financial crises on public polices and legal frameworks. Results of her research have been published in journals such as the European Journal of Political Research, Journal of Common Market Studies, West European Politics, Political Studies, Journal of European Public Policy and Revue française de science politique. More recently, her co-authored book The Court of Justice and the Politics of Law (with Fabien Terpan) has been published in the European Union Series with Palgrave (2017).
Discussion: Nefeli Lefkopoulou, Sciences Po, Law School and Olivier Rozenberg, Sciences Po, CEE
Compulsory registration - For the external people to Sciences Po: You will have to arrive 10 minutes before the beginning of the seminar and to provide you with your identity papers)