In this issue

AuthorHarm Schepel,Joana Mendes
Date01 May 2019
Published date01 May 2019
In this issue
It is hard to overestimate the influence that the thesis of IntegrationThroughLaw (ITL) has had on European legal
scholarship. Sweeping in scope, elegant in theoretical framework, articulated and championed by the intellectual greats
of our time, it has not only held a prominent place in the collective European legal imagination but also seemed, for a very
long time, simply rightas a description of the way the process of integration was unfolding. In the course of history, it is
inevitable and an unqualified good that dominant paradigms get challenged. For some time now, as the archives
open, as the quantsget to work, as historians and social scientists produce qualitative data and engage in microlevel
sociological analysis, some of the empirical claims and assumptionsunderlying the construct of ITL are being questioned
in research scattered around history, sociology and political science as much or more as in the legal literature. We
owe a debt of gratitude to Rasmussen and Sindbjerg Martinsen, prominent scholars in this vital field, for pulling these
strands of work together in what is simultaneously a fascinating retelling of the story of European (legal) integration, a
nuanced alternative interpretation of the development of European law and a stark reminder of the lack of selfaware-
ness of European legal scholarship in its role in constructing legitimising constitutionaldiscourses. In a related effort,
Petrićdusts off the covers of legal realism and neoinstitutionalism to produce what is, counterintuitively perhaps, a
fresh and bold assessment of the Court's strategic use of general principles of law.
At a different level of analysis and with different tools, Colombo's article contributes to sharpen one's understanding
of a legal system at times torn between centralisation and fragmentation and evolving under the impulse of administra-
tive reforms. In the interstices of the constitutional framework, the Commission and MemberStates have changed roles
in the enforcement of state aid rules in a managerial trend of decentralisation. Uneven administrative capacities,
interpretative complexity and reliance on polycentric networks involving public and private actors brought inevitable
complications which the Commission sought to address via administrative integration. Colombo shows that the
Commission's influence persists as part of a transnational epistemic community of state aid experts and, at the same
time, a differentiated administrative space has emerged where Member States occupy uneven positions that may
reinforce national political interests. Lettanie, in turn, examines the powers of the European Central Bank under the
European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Treaty according to a sliding scale of delegation, whereby its position may shift
from agent to trustee, in contrast with its formally assigned role under that Treaty. Bridging two main theories on del-
egation to nonmajoritarian institutions, she contends that neither principleagent nor fiduciary theory can adequately
explain the institutional position of the ECB under the ESM Treaty. Boute and Zhang delve into a legal and economic
analysis of the EU and Chinese EmissionsTrading Schemes (ETS), questioning the ability of markets to produce lowcar-
bon investments and, hence, their ability to address climate change. The Chinese ETS, influenced by the EU's experi-
ence, applies to the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Boute and Zhang's article examines the implications
of the innate regulatory dependence of ETS to the ability of markets to determine the price of carbon allowances, as well
as the consequences of regulatory intervention to correct surpluses resulting from the overallocation of allowances.
Comparing the EU and China, they show the relevance of institutional contexts for the functioning of environmental
markets. Their analysis sheds critical light on the credo of market instruments as a more flexible and costefficient alter-
native to command and control mechanisms in supporting environmental protection.
We open this issue, however, with the protection of property under the European Convention of Human Rights.
In historical deconstruction and conceptual reconstruction, Mattei, Albanese and Fisher show the contingency of
dominant notions of individualised property rights and point the way towards a relational conception of protection
DOI: 10.1111/eulj.12325
228 © 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Eur Law J. 2019;

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