|Researcher||Daniel Schraad, MA und Thomas Traguth, MA, MES|
The READplus project aims at developing and testing an integration-index to measure the respective degree of integration of the EU-multilevel-system in a dynamic perspective. Besides its importance for present and future research projects carried out at the Jean Monnet Chair (NewGov, EU-Consent, DFG Research Unit on the constitutionalisation of the EU), the index is particularly relevant for discussing, testing and possibly improving current theoretical approaches to European integration.
Especially regarding the negative referenda on the Constitutional Treaty in France and in the Netherlands as well as recent and future enlargements of the Union, the question arrises, if the degree of integration of the EU-multilevel-system can still be expected to increase, or if disintegration or spill-back-developments are more likely to occur in the future. The construction of an integration index, which should be able to capture also different hybrid forms of the EU-System by locating them between the two poles of supranational and intergovernmental modes of governance, represents an important and innovative contribution to recent research on the constitutionalisation of the EU.
In a first step, the integration-index will be constructed with special regard to the so called “legal constitution” (written provisions of the treaties only). In this context, the dimension of the vertical division of competences and the dimension of the horizontal distribution of competences and inter-institutional decision-making rules will be linked in quantitative terms.
In a longer-term period, the index is to be modified in order to measure also different degrees of integration within the “living constitution” of the EU (real use of treaty provisions).