Norm negotiations. The construction of new norms regarding gender and development in EU foreign aid policy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The aim of this article is to explain norm change regarding gender and development in the EU. I trace the policy process from initiation to implementation to clarify how new norms were introduced and spread. The article combines a constructivist approach to norm diffusion with a negotiation perspective. Constructivist accounts underline the role of norm entrepreneurs and how they persuade others to internalize new norms. Insufficient attention is, however, paid to norm resistance. A focus on strategic negotiations is therefore needed to understand norm diffusion processes fully. Gender entrepreneurs were confronted by less convinced colleagues in Council committees. The new norms had to fight their way into institutional thinking, competing with traditional norms like economic growth. Norm negotiations took two major forms: text negotiations and implementation negotiations. After a gender resolution was taken, the new document became an important reference point, which has facilitated the institutionalization of gender norms in the EU.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Political Science


  • Constructivism, Förhandlingar, Politik i tredje världen, Eu, Development, Policy, Gender, Negotiation, Norm, Entrepreneurs, Spread
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)457-476
JournalJournal of European Public Policy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Publication categoryResearch