States as Gatekeepers in EU Asylum Politics: Explaining the Non-adoption of a Refugee Quota System

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


Building on Moravcsik's Liberal Intergovernmentalism, I offer an explanation of the non-decision on permanent EU refugee quotas. Some traditionally influential Member States in EU asylum politics, such as Germany, Austria and Sweden, received large numbers of refugees and faced strong domestic pressures to engage other Member States in responsibility-sharing. Yet, governments of Member States with small application numbers (among whom several Eastern European governments were particularly vocal) had incentives to undercut responsibility-sharing to avoid similar pressures. Having a better alternative to the potentially negotiated agreement, these governments successfully blocked the introduction of permanent refugee quotas. Besides explaining the absence of an effective response to one of the root causes of the asylum crisis (unequal strains) through asymmetrical interdependence, the article further develops Liberal Intergovernmentalist arguments and shows how national electorates influence positions taken by governments at the EU level when they are mobilized by right-wing populist parties.

ZeitschriftJournal of Common Market Studies
Seiten (von - bis)44-62
Anzahl der Seiten19
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 01.2018
Extern publiziertJa

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© 2017 University Association for Contemporary European Studies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd