The development of European Union (EU) civil protection cooperation
highlights important issues in the debate on the internal–external
security nexus. It points to the increased transnationalization of threats
usually assigned to the field of ‘internal’ security, but it also presents
researchers with a puzzle: despite the relatively rapid development of
civil protection cooperation, there is still substantial disagreement among
the EU member states as to how it should continue to develop. Applying
an analytical framework based on neo-institutional organization theory
and the study of organizational ‘fields’, this article explores two questions:
What is the institutional basis for member states’ diverging
positions on the future direction of EU civil protection? and How may
these positions affect the current development of EU civil protection?
Our analysis draws upon empirical evidence from civil protection practice
in Spain, Sweden and the EU, including official documents in the
form of bills and laws, policy papers and elite interviews. We find that
the basis for member states’ diverging positions on the future of EU
civil protection is rooted in conflicting national institutional logics
of civil protection. No logic has become dominant at the EU level,
suggesting that as long as multiple institutional logics continue to coexist,
disagreement on the future development of European level civil
protection cooperation will persist.
SAGE , 2009. Vol. 44, no 3, 288-308 p.