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Balkanizing Europeanization: Fight against Corruption and Regional Relations in the Western Balkans

Edited By Vladimir Vučković and Vladimir Đorđević

The main theme of this book revolves around the idea of Europeanization of the Western Balkans. In that respect, the volume discusses the fight against corruption and regional relations in former Yugoslav states, such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia. The objective of the book is to detect the level of effectiveness of the EU impact on domestic structural changes in the Western Balkans regarding aforementioned research issues. The contributors argue that the EU impact in the Western Balkans has so far been limited and point to limitations in this regard.

«The book Balkanizing Europeanisation offers timely, detailed, critical and excellently researched insight into the complicated mutual relations of the EU and the countries of the Balkan Peninsula. Based on excellent scholarship, meticulous original research and first-hand experience with the Balkan area, the authors provide a reader with rich and profound analysis of successes and failures of Europeanisation of the Balkan countries. The volume shall become an obligatory reading for many categories of scholars, experts, and people practicing diplomacy with and in the region.»

Vít Hloušek, Professor of European Politics, Masaryk University

«The limits to and problems connected with processes of Europeanization in the Western Balkans remain an important topic both for policy-makers and for scholarly inquiry. Vučković and Đorđević are to be congratulated for having assembled a first-rate teach of scholars to examine the most vital issues at hand.»

Sabrina P. Ramet, Professor of Political Science, The Norwegian University of Science & Technology

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Chasing the Candidacy Status: Tacit Contestations of EU Norms in Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Abstract: This chapter focuses on tracing transfer models of EU norms to BiH in tackling corruption and identifying policy-making patterns in advancing regional cooperation with other states. We argue that Europeanization processes in the BiH political context are taken as disruptive to the existing normative scheme embedded in the legal system. Settled perceptions of disruptiveness are one of the key reasons why EU norms do not gain foothold.

Introduction

The process of Europeanization has had a measurable impact on societal transformations of the Western Balkans countries after the collapse of communism and in the aftermath of violent conflicts in the 1990s. The case of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) is particularly relevant in this context, as it reflects Europe’s elevated and persistent engagement in reforming the country’s political system, predominantly in shaping the public policy and building and strengthening the institutional capacity. Many international organizations, mainly the European Union (EU)1, the Council of Europe (CoE), and several other, have been actively engaged in the transfer and diffusion of various European norms onto local institutions and actors. The proposed measures and implemented actions strived for much-needed reforms and promotion of high rule of law standards in various public sectors.

The purpose of this chapter is to offer a comprehensive overview and analysis of the overall impact of the Europeanization process in BiH, expressly in setting up coherent and effective channels for fostering localization of European norms, on both national and sub-national levels. This...

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