Civil dialogue and the Citizens' Initiative: accounting for collaboration and competition using the advocacy coalition framework and the strategic action field.
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GREENWOOD, J. 2015. Civil dialogue and the Citizens' Initiative: accounting for collaboration and competition using the advocacy coalition framework and the strategic action field. In Johannson, H. and Kalm, S. (eds.) EU civil society: patterns of cooperation, competition and conflict. London: Palgrave MacMillan [online], chapter 11, pages 193-209. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137500724_11
The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) has introduced a largely new set of campaigners working in a fresh 'direct democracy' frame at EU level, alongside an established group of Brussels based EU NGOs seeking to institutionalise an elite 'civil dialogue' between themselves and EU institutions. It therefore provides an ideal empirical setting to evaluate explanatory frameworks designed to account for circumstances where challengers emerge viz. incumbents, and for conflict and collaboration. If 'the worth of any theory is measured by how well it accords with empirical evidence' (Fligstein & McAdam, 2011, p.23), how well does their 'Strategic Action Field' (SAF) theory perform in comparison to another other meso-level theory designed to account for rival coalitions and the consequences of their interaction, the Advocacy Coalition Framework (ACF)? How well do these accounts perform when seeking to explain collaboration and conflict, as well as change and stability?