Europeanization against Globalization? The Role of the European Community in Setting Strategic Orientations of Non-State Actors in Research and Technology

Research question/goal: 

The major justification for introducing and pursuing a research and technology policy in the European Community was increasingly sharp global competition. It raised the possibility Europe might fall behind in technological innovation, and hence a perceived necessity for greater efforts at both national and European levels to strengthen Western European competitiveness relative to the USA and Japan, Europe's major economic competitors. The means for strengthening competitiveness, it was thought, was best to network the relevant actors - enterprises, research institutes, universities - particularly in leading technologies. The project here aims to explore and test the hypothesis that the European Community has been successful in the political idea of propagating and supporting the networking of research and technology capacities since the early 1980s for two reasons. One is that it could mobilize the interests of state, sub-state, and non-state actors in this direction; the other is that the idea was compatible with other "leading ideas" (including from non-economic and non-technology realms) whose orientation was also toward a "self-assertion" of Western Europe. The apparent loss of attractiveness of the West European orientation, and its likely enhancement through a (initially opposing) global orientation, is due in part to a differentiation of actors' interests at various levels, in part to a gradual move away from a highpoint in "integration enthusiasm." The empirical analysis will focus on France, Germany, and a smaller European Community member state, and examine the declamatory statements about, as well as the actual participation in, the various networking concepts and programs over time.

Fact sheet

1993 to 1994