The eurozone crisis has spectacularly increased the European Union’s (EU’s)
institutional demand for expert knowledge. While the crisis has challenged
the legitimacy of the EU in many ways, it has in contrast amplified the
visibility and the role of Brussels-based think tanks as laboratories of ideas
that think ahead about eurozone governance and policies. Drawing on the
analysis of more than 450 expert reports produced by two leading Brusselsbased
think tanks, over 300 CVs and biographical notes as well interviews, this
article explores when, how and why Brussels-based think tanks expand their
networks in times of crisis. While the article leaves aside the question of their
ideational impact upon agenda-setting and the policy formulation process
leading to the new European economic governance, it shows how think tanks
adapt to crises and how they seek to have a voice in thinking about the
future of the EU’s economic governance.
Why and how do think tanks expand their networks in times of crisis?