Agenda-setting in the EU has been largely approached using literature from US scholars that emerged over the last 35 years. Surprisingly perhaps, grand theory in European integration has been ignored, even though it might offer valuable insights for longitudinal studies, particularly where issues have had difficulty making it onto the policy agenda. This article seeks to reconcile neofunctionalist and agenda-setting literature, to trace the journey towards agenda-setting, a process through which venues and images play a crucial role over time in framing competing issues. It puts forward a combined framework for analysing agenda-setting dynamics, before applying it to examine a policy case over five decades. Tracing the 'issue career' of Community rail infrastructure upwards onto the EU's policy agenda, it shows how strategies to gain attention and build credibility mediate latent spillover pressures in order to secure agenda-setting change.
- TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE
- rail transport