With the point of departure in the otherwise extensive knowledge on reform and routine within the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) of the European Union (EU), this paper argues that: (1) in order to fully appreciate the insights provided we need to look into the complementary nature of ideational and interest-based approaches; and (2) lessons can be learned by comparing several (here, three of five) reform attempts and by pointing out the importance of periods in between reforms (here, covering a time horizon stretching from 1980 to 2003). Against this background, the paper offers a comprehensive logic of policy development that may be used for other areas of study, which both draws on the insights into bargaining processes as offered by rational choice institutional theory and the insight into arguing processes as offered by constructivist approaches.
- Policy development
- Common Agricultural Policy
- rational choice institutionalism