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Civil Service Unions and the Social Construction of the European Civil Service


Scholars of the State have demonstrated that senior officials’ ability to embody the general interest is the result of long-term social processes marked by the concomitant construction of the State and civil servants as a social group. The situation of European civil servants is different from that of State civil servants; their ability to maintain their central role and defend the European interest invites us to turn our enquiry to the processes that realize them (in the double sense of Berger and Luckman). They are a group whose objectification has strong foundations and is also rooted in European institutional “realities”. One of the aspects of this process may be is analysed by focusing on the unions of European civil servants. By examining the social process of crossed unification between the cause, the interest, and the group led by European civil servants unions, this sociological based approached aims to clarify the relation which unites Eurocrats as a body with the European Union institutions.


The European civil servant unions : History and Institutionalization

  • The creation of the European trade unions
  • Defence of salaries, group representation and Commission loyalty
  • The institutionalization of group representation

The representation field and the shaping of the group

  • Mobilization of the group and unification process of its symbolic frontiers
  • Internal competition and integration process of the group
  • From mobilizations over staff regulations to the objectification of the group


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