The resignation of the Santer-Commission: the impact of 'trust' and 'reputation'
This contribution begins with reciting the facts behind the resignation of the European Commission under Jacques Santer, followed by theoretical considerations on the significance of trust and reputation from the principal-agent-theory perspective. The third part puts the emphasis on discussing as to which extent a loss of trust and reputation had an influence in the resignation of the Santer-Commission. The author concludes that the Santer-Commission underestimated the increased power of the European Parliament. The inadequate information policy and the increasing practice of manipulating documents led to a loss of trust. After the threshold had been crossed in connection with the BSE-scandal further violations finally led to the destruction of reputation of the Santer-Commission.
European Commission; European Parliament; agency theory; European officials; institutions; political science; economics
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