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Title: Networks as levers : emergence, functioning and export of transnational network of energy regulators
Author: Vantaggiato, Francesca
ISNI:       0000 0004 7426 9563
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis investigates the emergence, functioning and evolution of voluntary, informal networks of regulators. Via a combination of inductive and deductive reasoning, qualitative and quantitative methods, this research sheds light on thus far unexplored mechanisms of networked regulatory collaboration. These are: the conditions leading to spontaneous network emergence and consolidation into an institutional structure; the factors determining network members’ ties to each other; the strategies that network members deploy to ensure network survival; the conditions facilitating network entrepreneurship; and the role of informal networks in the implementation of foreign policy agendas. Through six empirical chapters, divided in three parts, this thesis explains why regulators network. The core argument is that regulators use networks as levers: they leverage their collective collaboration in order to obtain goals that are both individually and collectively desirable. The first part shows that they network for control: regulators form networks whenever they face concrete threats to the scope of their authority and the extent of their autonomy. The second part shows that regulators network for resources: similarity in the political economy and expertise explain the structure of regulators’ relationships together with resources, as regulators rely on their peers to compensate for their scarce staff numbers. The third part shows that regulators network for survival, and that the institutional integration of networks facilitates regulators’ network entrepreneurship. Further, it shows that international organisations and regulators deem informal networks capable of fostering policy change; hence, they export regulatory networks to target jurisdictions in the explicit attempt of replicating their success formula. The thesis accomplishes this ambitious research agenda by focusing on four empirical cases of transnational/trans-jurisdictional networks of energy regulators: the Council of European Energy Regulators (CEER), the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) of the USA, and their respective progeny, i.e. the Association of Mediterranean Energy Regulators (MedReg) and the Energy Regional Regulatory Association (ERRA) of Central and Eastern Europe.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available