Governing the shipyards : Europeanisation and the German shipbuilding industry
This thesis examines processes of Europeanisation in the German shipbuilding industry between 1980 and 2002. In particular, it analyses the impact of European Union (EU) shipbuilding policy on German shipbuilding policy and German public and private actors. The thesis argues that the specific salient features of the shipbuilding industry are decisive in explaining what drives Europeanisation in the German shipbuilding industry in terms of the response of private actors. Their reaction to EU policy is inextricably linked to that of the public actors. Accordingly, the thesis highlights the interactive nature of the Europeanisation processes with which domestic public and private actors are involved. Thus, it argues that the analysis of 'EU action' and 'German reaction' in the field of shipbuilding needs to consider the impact of German public actors' responses to EU shipbuilding policy on those of domestic private actors, and vice versa. The response of German public actors - the Federal and Land governments - is analysed in terms of German shipbuilding policy content and institutional developments. German shipbuilding policy is shown to meet and exceed EU shipbuilding policy requirements. The impact of EU shipbuilding policy on private actors - German shipbuilding firms and the German shipbuilding association - is explored in terms of their interest representation activities and the shipbuilding projects for which they seek state support. German shipbuilding firms look increasingly to the EU as the channel through which to air their concerns and further their interests. Such a response is based on the realisation that the EU is able to secure benefits that the domestic governments cannot provide. Empirical analysis also shows that German shipbuilding firms have engaged in shipbuilding projects of the type encouraged by EU policy. This thesis suggests that Europeanisation processes are contingent and differentiated and due attention should be paid to various sets of domestic actors.