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Experts and Expertise in Science and Technology in Europe since the 1960s

Organized civil Society, Democracy and Political Decision-making


Christine Bouneau and David Burigana

Do the politicians actually take decisions, or rather the experts do it in their place? In other words, it is a matter of understanding whether the political stakeholders/representatives simply approve the final stage of a decision procedure led by the experts they have delegated, since they lack cognitive skills or because the experts do not try enough to explicit potentials and risks involved. Here lays the possible loss of democratic legitimacy in the decision-making process. This brings into question the responsibility of a ruling class to which the political representatives and secondarily the experts belong.

This book analyses the interplay of these different actors in the political relations among States since the 1960s: this interaction capability becomes a key factor for the international accountability of a country, and above all for the democratic reliability of its decision-making process. Then we have to consider the role of the organized civil society.

In that way, expertise provides the basis for the mediation among the States, and then expertise goes for the legitimacy of power practices in all parties engaged, and in the decision-making process inside the democratic arenas.

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‘Europeanization’ of Technology. The Role of Trade Unions in the Aerospace Sector (Sara Venditti)


‘Europeanization’ of Technology

The Role of Trade Unions in the Aerospace Sector

Sara Venditti

Università LUISS Guido Carli

Europeanization has been often used as a tool for achieving goals. Europe’s toolkit encloses several fields such as education, democratization, and regulatory laws. Outside the Communitarian framework, the use of such a device has not always been evident. Since the 1960s, European industries sought to achieve a stronger cooperation through aerospace programs and the European Community, these programs were not always feasible. Difficulties notwithstanding, merging national industries and creating brand-new companies among European partner produced tangible results during the 1980s and 1990s in many forms and fields – from Eurofighter and Airbus consortia to the European Space Agency. This research shows how the process of ‘Europeanization’ was complicated by several problems. The ones highlighted in this study are the British government desire to nationalize aerospace industries, the general increase in unemployment, and the testy nature of industrial agreements. Analyzing on the aerospace cooperation between European countries, and focusing on the United Kingdom as the pivotal case study, this study aims to investigate whether the national trade unions, industries, and air staffs were influential on national and international policies due to their dual nature – national and transnational – and whether their role was crucial on the ‘Europeanization’ process of the aerospace sector.

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