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Europeanisation as Policy Learning

Iryna Kushnir (Nottingham Institute of Education at Nottingham Trent University, UK)

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine

ISBN: 978-1-83982-115-8, eISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

Publication date: 14 January 2021


This chapter reviews the theoretical literature about Europeanisation and argues the need for further analysis of post-Soviet Europeanisation. This chapter also connects post-Soviet Europeanisation to the notion of policy learning, which is introduced as a theoretical perspective. The chapter discusses the challenges around the definition of policy learning in relation to other policy processes such as transfer, translation and diffusion. Policy layering does not presuppose mutual exclusion between path-dependence and change, but rather the fruitful mutual development of both. It implies a gradual change of certain policy aspects and the retaining of others. The development of the links between path-dependence and change in layering is a highly messy process. Multiple actors participate in learning, and they create policy as they learn. There are no distinct stages of learning, and the line between policy-makers and practitioners is often blurred.

The difference between policy-making on the European level and the post-Soviet domestic context is significant. The literature about post-Soviet countries recognises the presence of a struggle between Europeanisation and post-Soviet legacies there. Europeanisation in this literature is presented as change; while the influence of the post-Soviet legacies is seen as an obstacle that hinders it. The policy learning concept is key here to frame Europeanisation in the post-Soviet context as an area of enquiry which may develop according to the logic of layering.


Kushnir, I. (2021), "Europeanisation as Policy Learning", The Bologna Reform in Ukraine, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 9-25.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021 Iryna Kushnir. Published under exclusive licence by Emerald Publishing Limited