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Adaptation, Discretion, and the Application of EU Animal Welfare Legislation

Brendan Carroll promoted On Thursday October 30th Brendan Carroll successfully defended his PhD dissertation entitled: "Adaptation, Discretion, and the Application of EU Animal Welfare Legislation".

Brandon Carroll; Bernard Steunenberg
30 October 2014

Brendan’s dissertation examines the application of EU farm animal welfare legislation in 27 member states.

The dissertation develops a theoretical framework that applies insights from the transposition literature to the post-transposition phase of implementation and derives hypotheses to explain cross-national variation in implementation success. The hypotheses are centered on the notion that the pressure to adapt to EU requirements makes post-transposition application difficult. Countering adaptation pressure, the presence of discretion, whereby member states have some flexibility to adapt requirements to their national circumstances, helps to alleviate the difficulties brought on by adaptation pressure.

Additional hypotheses are derived from the transposition literature concerning the geographic and organizational decentralization of implementation authority and the length of transposition delay prior to application.

The hypotheses are tested through a mixed methods design that combines a set of case studies and a quantitative analysis of the implementation of all major requirements applied in 27 member states in the legislation within this policy area.

Support is found for the adaptation pressure and discretion hypotheses, while limited support is found for the hypotheses concerning the decentralization of implementation authority.

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