The question of the legitimacy and legitimation of International Organisations (IOs) has risen to the top of research agendas in a variety of academic fields. Growing attention stems from the combination of IOs attempts to manage an increasingly complex number of policy problems and a perceived failure to do so successfully. Indeed, it is the real and perceived failure of cooperative governance that demands greater scholarly attention to the dynamics by which IOs gain - and lose - legitimacy in the face of rising public expectations. This paper examines the case of the European Union, an IO which over the past two decades has attempted to build a variety of 'transboundary crisis management capacities' (Boin, Ekengren and Rhinard 2013) across its governing sectors, but which has employed and deployed those capacities to varying degrees of success. The paper argues that standard accounts of the sources of EU legitimacy fail to capture the matter sufficiently, and building upon recent work by Tallberg and Zürn (2015), argues for an approach that examines the procedure- and performance-based sources which can enhance the EU's political and technocratic legitimacy as a transboundary crisis manager.
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