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Differentiated implementation over time: the (re)-customization of the Common European Asylum System

European Union
Integration
Differentiation
P10
Cristina Fasone
LUISS University
Sandra Kröger
University of Exeter

Thursday 14:00 - 15:00 (16/06/2022)


Abstract

The multi-level government nature of the EU implies that Member States have the discretion to ‘customize’. Shifting attention to customization as a set of policy choices made by Member States at the national level, this paper argues that differentiated implementation can be a highly political process. While research until now has explored customization as a phenomenon that occurs at the first instance of transposition, there is no evidence that Member States cannot re-customize directives after it has entered into force. Governments and their preferences matter for customization, which are likely to fluctuate over a directive’s lifetime, resulting in what this article terms ‘re-customization’. The paper bridges between actor-centered institutionalism and previous work on differentiated implementation. By focusing on the concept of re-customization, the article puts forward an extension of customization that emphases its temporal dimension. This study employs a qualitative diachronic within-case study of the (re-)customization of the Common European Asylum System’s Reception Condition-, Procedures- and Qualification-Directives in Austria from 2011 to 2020. The Austrian case provides for considerable variance in terms of government preferences. In this sense, it captures ways in which flexibility gained by discretion is used over time to adapt EU policy outcomes through Member State policy outputs.