Where have all the lawyers gone? Structure and transformations of the top European Commission officials’ legal training
Title: Where have all the lawyers gone? Structure and transformations of the top European Commission officials’ legal training
Series/Number: EUI RSCAS; 2008/38
Founded on a prosopographical analysis of the European Commission¹s top civil servants, this paper gathers data in order to contribute to the analysis of the European legal capital in two ways. First, we show that while jurists (i.e. agents for whom law was the main element of their training) integrated the European Commission administration very early on, and acquired dominant positions, they were strong only insofar as their legal training was the basis of a broader undertaking of construction and acquisition of a more general bureaucratic capital. Secondly, we demonstrate that this ability to hold dominant positions within the machine tends to be increasingly contested with the rise of other agents, especially economists, whose properties tend to become indispensable for a high level career within the European Commission.
Subject: European Commission; top civil servants; bureaucratic capital; lawyers; prosopography
This paper was originally presented at the Conference “The European Legal Field-Le champ juridique européen” organized by Bruno de Witte and Antoine Vauchez with the Robert Schuman Centre and the Academy of European Law (European University Institute, 25-26 September 2008).
Type of Access: openAccess