The private life of politics

Turkey’s Europeanisation saga, which began in 1959 and climaxed in 2005 with the opening of membership negotiations with the European Union (EU), presents a unique opportunity to understand how interstate actors negotiate their interests; what ‘common interests’ look like from their historically and culturally contingent perspectives; and what happens when actors work for their private, professional, public, personal or institutional interests, even when those interests may go against their mandate. Honing in on the role of diplomats and lobbyists during negotiations for Turkey’s contentious EU membership bid, this book presents intricate, backstage conflicts of power and interests and negotiations of compromises, which drove this candidate country both closer to and farther from the EU. The reader will find in the book the everyday actors and agents of Turkish Europeanisation and learn what their work entails, which interests they represent and how they do what they do. Based on long-term ethnographic fieldwork in Brussels, the book argues that public, private and corporate actors, voicing economic, political and bureaucratic interests from all corners of Europe, sought access to markets and polities through the Turkish bid instead of pursuing their mandate of facilitating Turkey’s EU accession. Although limited progress was achieved in Turkey’s actual EU integration, diplomats and lobbyists from both sides of the negotiating table contradictorily affirmed their expertise as effective negotiators, seeking more status and power. This is the first book-length account of the EU–Turkey power-interest negotiations in situ, from the perspective of its long-term actors and agents.

Regulated office-holders, unregulated lobbies

10 Getting to grips with ­lobbying: ­regulated office-holders, ­unregulated lobbies Introduction Lobbying is an inescapable feature of modern democracy yet the term is often used with negative connotations. To lobby is not necessarily to exercise improper influence, and there is a strong case in a democracy for tolerating lobbying unless it contravenes the law, for example through outright bribery. But while the ability to advance political claims through lobbying is considered an important democratic freedom, much of what goes on, while not illegal, often looks

in The regulation of standards in British public life
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Lessons from an anti-case

room for lobby­ing as a legitimate communicative form of channelling vital interests, influence and information. Unlike common depictions of lobbying as an outsider’s activity, I found that the kind of lobbying that was most significant regarding Turkish Europeanisation was done not by professional lobbyists but instead came from both outside and inside Turkish and EU bureaucracies. Even then, ordinary lobbying practices were not primarily about facilitating Turkish accession per se. Instead, interest holders and their representatives used membership negotiations to

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

5 Dramas of statecraft, mistrust and the politics of non-membership Failed promises Diplomacy and lobbying are often considered to require mutual trust and common understanding, because these underpin effective communication (Coen 1998, 2007; Woll 2012). Turkish–EU relations, however, are marked precisely by an absence of mutual trust between officials, economic actors and interest representatives on both sides. As relations were marked by mutual suspicion, mistrust and wariness on both sides, Turkish actors engaged in a curious politics of non-membership in

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

negotiations conducted by their bureaucrats and diplomats long before Council meetings (Tallberg 2008). Turkey.indb 89 24/07/2019 17:31:25 90 Arts of diplomacy and lobbying in the EU institutions Out of sight, mid-level diplomats from EU member states meet about 3,000 times in various Council committee meetings in a six-month period, with the Council Presidency providing administrative assistance to them, wherein ‘common European interests’ are actually negotiated.1 Whether their involvement in EU affairs was formal or informal, most of my neighbours were everyday

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

accession process, Leyla’s friend, a fellow lobbyist, commented with dismay: ‘After accession, there is less need for lobbying’. Over a decade has passed since Leyla made that remark. In those years, Turkey initially moved closer to joining the EU but then moved far away; over the same period, many of Leyla’s diplomat and lobbyist colleagues from both Turkey and the EU achieved professional advance as a consequence of their experience and involvement in the tortuous accession process. This book is an effort to understand these contradictory dynamics that moulded the

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

to talk about Turkey – the ‘sexiest’ topic on the Parliament’s agenda ever, attracting a lot of interest and Turkey.indb 145 24/07/2019 17:31:27 146 Arts of diplomacy and lobbying in the EU institutions Figure 6.1  Documents of the European Parliament. Source: European Parliament/Pietro Naj-Oleari exchanges from all over Europe. I knew better than to miss Hasan’s offer to facilitate my attendance at that meeting. Hasan wrote to a colleague from AFET; next, I found myself in the Parliament’s accreditation centre! There, several receptionists greeted me in our

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

their homeland (and its government) in Europe through civil society and lobby groups. Some of these groups were initiated or backed by Erdoğan himself, such as the Union of Turkish Associations, the Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists of Turkey – which the Turkish courts outlawed after the 15 July 2016 coup attempt due to its ties to the Gülenist movement – and the Union of European Turkish Democrats (now Union of International Democrats). Founded in 2004 in Cologne, Germany, the latter has branches in fifteen European countries, twelve Turkey.indb 30 24

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation

Turkey, Zekeriya asserted, the government would slow down or speed up ‘[accession] relations with the EU’. He explained that AKP governments had come to the awareness of how significant it was to lobby the Commission’s expert committees in their work of preparing technical positions for negotiations with Turkey and to place Turkish experts in them. Deniz’s organisation had been the first to alert the Turkish government (before the AKP came to power) to this fact. Zekeriya addressed Turkey’s image problem as an obstacle to its EU membership. Between the lines he

in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation
The biography of an insurgent woman

Elizabeth Wolstenholme Elmy (1833–1918) was one of the most significant pioneers of the British women's emancipation movement, though her importance is little recognised. Wolstenholme Elmy referred to herself as an ‘initiator’ of movements, and she was at the heart of every campaign Victorian feminists conducted — her most well-known position being that of secretary of the Married Women's Property Committee from 1867–82. A fierce advocate of human rights, as the secretary of the Vigilance Association for the Defence of Personal Rights, Wolstenholme Elmy earned the nickname of the ‘parliamentary watch-dog’ from Members of Parliament anxious to escape her persistent lobbying. Also a feminist theorist, she believed wholeheartedly in the rights of women to freedom of their person, and was the first woman ever to speak from a British stage on the sensitive topic of conjugal rape. Wolstenholme Elmy engaged theoretically with the rights of the disenfranchised to exert force in pursuit of the vote, and Emmeline Pankhurst lauded her as ‘first’ among the infamous suffragettes of the Women's Social and Political Union. As a lifelong pacifist, however, she resigned from the WSPU Executive in the wake of increasingly violent activity from 1912. A prolific correspondent, journalist, speaker and political critic, Wolstenholme Elmy left significant resources, believing they ‘might be of value’ to historians. This book draws on a great deal of this documentation to produce a portrait that does justice to her achievements as a lifelong ‘Insurgent woman’.