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Cross-border cooperation as policy entrepreneurship:the success of European cross-border regions

M Perkmann

CSGR Working Paper No. 166/05

The article addresses the recent proliferation of Cross-Border Regions, or Euroregions, across the EU. It aims to explain why they have been more successfully institutionalised in some areas while they have had less success in others. It conceptualises Euroregions as the outcome of policy entrepreneurship strategies through which support is mobilised on the local level and the Euroregions are institutionalised into durable organisations. Based on a systematic comparison of three cases, the EUREGIO, Viadrina and Tyrol, it is shown how different administrative and institutional environments throughout the EU affect the ability of Euroregions to engage in policy entrepreneurship. At the same time, it is shown that is it premature to perceive Euroregions as new types of regional territorial entities; rather, they constitute an institutional form through which existing authorities engage in collective action across nation-state borders within the context of EU multi-level governance.

Keywords: cross-border region – cross-border co-operation – trans-border co-operation – EU – policy entrepreneurship