Given the omnipresence of delegation and control in the EU, the principal–agent model has become a popular analytical framework to study the design and effects of delegation and control. Yet, with the ascendance of governance as a mode of decision-making, the contemporary relevance of the principal–agent model became contested. We argue that the model still retains its relevance to study contemporary EU politics, but it requires researchers to follow a two-step approach. First, the hierarchical, dyadic relationship under study has to be clearly defined amidst a complex web of relations. Second, the conditions that have led to the observed pattern of delegation and/or the consequences of this pattern on the distribution of power between the principals and the agent can be inquired.
|Title of host publication||The Principal-Agent model and the European Union|
|Editors||Tom Delreux, Johan Adriaensen|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Number of pages||34|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Nov 2017|
Delreux, T., & Adriaensen, J. (2017). Introduction. Use and Limitations of the Principal-Agent model in Studying the European Union. In T. Delreux, & J. Adriaensen (Eds.), The Principal-Agent model and the European Union (pp. 1-34). Palgrave Macmillan.