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Europeanisation in Turkish Water Management Policy

A Sociological Institutionalism Perspective
Table of
Rational institutionalism's theoretical explanations for external Europeanization focus on material incentives such as accession conditionality in determining change in non-EU states. However, such exogenous explanations struggle to interpret ongoing Europeanization where accession incentives have declined or even reversed ('stalled' accession) but institutional adjustment still continues. This Europeanization phenomenon is evident in Turkey, a state that had actively pursued EU membership between 1999 and 2004, resulting in domestic institutional reform to align governance structures with the EU. Thereafter, Europeanization has reversed in some policy sectors but nonetheless continued in others such as Turkish water policy, despite a declining accession process. Rational institutional arguments therefore appear to lose explanatory power for such events post-2005. An alternative theoretical proposition forwarded is that the EU accession process embedded a self-sustaining cycle of socialization through social learning around water policy norms amongst policy actors that has continued beyond this accession imperative.
Burcin Demirbilek is lecturer in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Cankiri Karatekin University.
List of Figures and Tables Introduction Chapter 1. Explaining Europeanisation in Turkish Accession Chapter 2. A Sociological Institutionalism Theoretical Framework Chapter 3. The Europeanisation of Turkish Water Policy: Implementing the Water Framework Directive at National Level Chapter 4. Implementing the Water Framework Directive at River Basin Level: Konya (closed) basin Chapter 5. Implementing the Water Framework Directive at River Basin Level: Buyuk Menderes River Basin Chapter 6. Assessing the Value of Sociological Institutionalism for Explaining the Europeanisation of Turkish Water Policy: A Discussion Conclusion
This book is a great contribution on the intersection point of Europeanisation, environmental policy, and norm transfer. Turkish water policy presents an excellent laboratory for testing how and to what extent Europeanisation of legislation and implementation of an environmental policy takes place in a candidate country. Demirbilek's book aptly and innovatively handles this by employing a sociological institutionalist perspective. Definitely a good read for students of environmental politics, water policy, the European Union, and sociological institutionalism. -- Vakur Sumer, Hoca Akhmet Yassawi University
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