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Delegation of Power to International Organisations and Institutional Empowerment over Time

Eugénia da Conceição-Heldt
Technische Universität München – TUM School of Governance
Eugénia da Conceição-Heldt
Technische Universität München – TUM School of Governance

Abstract

In recent decades, at varying levels states have surrendered some authority to international organizations (IOs) giving them different levels of institutional empowerment. Little attention has been devoted, however, to the political processes within international organizations and especially how do actors’ preferences interact with the institutional design over time. In this paper, we argue that institutional empowerment is a function of temporal dynamics, the degree of cohesion among states, the institutional design of the delegation contract, and IOs’ strategies to circumvent states’ control. Explicitly incorporating a temporal dimension and considering how each explanatory factor is affected by the passage of time will help us explain variation at the different levels of institutional empowerment and the degree of authority and autonomy granted to IOs. This will allow us to show when, how, and the conditions under which institutional empowerment is more likely to occur in the course of time.