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The EEAS: The Puzzle of a Service of a New Kind

Caterina Carta

This paper introduces the main organisational dilemma inherent in the new-born European External Action Service (EEAS). It argues that two main dimensions will impact the functioning of the EEAS. On the one hand, bureaucratic arrangements will bring about variations in officials’ preferences on how to compose different nationalities and previous institutional affiliations. On the other hand, the hybrid foreign policy mission of the EEAS will create variations in foreign policy conceptions on whether the EEAS should act as an enterpreneur or as a broker in the process of foreign-policy making. By crossing the bureaucratic and political dimensions, four scenarios on the future role EEAS within the EU system are advanced. It is here argued that the EEAS will evolve as an inter-institutional foreign-policy actor, that is, an actor with a strong consociational bureaucratic component with a tendency to act as an interpreneur of foreign policy making.

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