European Legal Networks in Crisis
This dissertation investigates how legal and policy professionals have legally constructed the
economic policy and governance of the EU since the beginning of the Eurozone crisis onwards. It
follows the legal and policy professionals who received the mandate to enable and consolidate
solutions, as well as defend these solutions in court. By tracing the practices and trajectories of these
agents, I show how, during an unfolding crisis, economic policy and governance becomes legally
constructed and changes the terms of legitimation for EU economic governance. The stakes involved
for the professionals involved also change. In this way, the dissertation speaks to the question of how
intrusive political power has been legitimated during the Eurozone crisis and what this means for the
legitimacy of European governance.
Theoretically, this thesis develops a Bourdieusian field approach that is adapted to the transnational
and diachronic context of the Eurozone crisis, as it unfolded from the end of 2009 until the
adjudication of key high-profile court cases before the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Drawing on boundary work, bricolage, and network interactions to analyse the practices of legal and
policy professionals, the process of enabling and consolidating solutions is elaborated. Attention is
given to how this process engenders stakes for the professionals in this emerging euro-crisis law field,
and what this means for emerging legal terms of legitimation for economic governance.
Methodologically, field-based and social network analysis are combined in two distinct ways. First, by
employing a temporally-focussed network analysis, which caters for change by measuring the shifting
centrality of legal and policy professionals over time, I show which professionals have had a highlevel
of involvement in dealing with crisis issues. This then permits the construction of a referral
network based on how these professionals refer to their peers. The involvement of the professionals
is further articulated as their accumulated symbolic capital: i.e. their involvement together with being
perceived to know well. From this, I infer a species of symbolic capital unique to being part of the
Eurozone crisis policy response: juridical capital.
This dissertation adds to scholarship on the Eurozone crisis by creating a theoretical framework based
on Bourdieusian fields, which utilises a network analytical approach to show how the practices and
interactions of legal and policy professionals reconfigure the transnational contexts that are implicated
in the crisis policy response. Moreover, it is shown how these professionals’ practices enable solutions
that are contested before the Court of Justice of the European Union, putting the Court in a position where it has to bring the definitional power of the law to bear on the actions of EU institutions and
the Eurogroup. The Court must decide how responsibility should be attributed. The dissertation
shows how legal and policy professionals developed practices, using jurisdictional and
constitutionalising logics, and deployed at different times during the crisis, enabled and consolidated
processes of legal integration and differentiation.
Field study of legal and policy professionals.
Legal and policy professionals enabled solutions by strategically interpreting legal rules to
accommodate financial and political preferences (boundary calibration). In some instances these
interpretations were seemingly in violation of EU jurisdiction and competence, so they had to move
into another jurisdiction to construct a solution (boundary object construction) thereby giving it a
different legal form based on that jurisdiction, namely, public international law. Moving between
jurisdictions raised issues of legitimacy and accountability for the EU legal professionals, so they
consolidated these solutions by explicitly referring to EU jurisdiction and competence in provisions
inserted into the non-EU legal instruments (cross-boundary linking), thereby entangling the
jurisdictions with each other. This links the jurisdictions to create compatibility and consistency
between two legal structures, the EU legal order and the ESM legal order, but also blurs the
boundaries between the jurisdictions; and thus the legally constituted authority of each contaminates
the other, making it ambiguous as to the accountability of EU entities operating in the ESM legal
order. Hence, the many court cases that sought to clarify this accountability. Notably, the Ledra
Advertising judgement asserted that the Commission and the ECB are accountable under EU law when
it operates under the ESM legal framework (boundary overlapping).
In ensuring the certainty of the rule of law for citizens in the European Union, as well as ensuring the stability of the macro-economy, political authority over the macro-economic governance needs to be better understood. Otherwise tensions caused by uncertainty, especially when different political actors with diverging interests capitalise on this uncertainty, can lead to further fragmentation of the European Union as well as self-reinforcing political echo chambers, which ends with ineffective governance and instability.
Degrees & Titles
Ph.D Double Degree, Political & Social Sciences (ULB); International Political Sociology (CBS), June 2020
M.Sc. International Business and Politics, Copenhagen Business School, 2016
B.Sc. Business Administration and Sociology, Copenhagen Business School, 2014
Postdoctoral Researcher, iCourts, Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen, 1 September 2020 – present.
Research Assistant, Department of Organisation, Copenhagen Business School, 1 May 2020 – 31 July 2020
External Lecturer, Department of Organisation, Copenhagen Business School, 1 October 2019 – 28 February 2020
Academic Secondment, McKinsey & Company, Brussels, March 2018 – September 2018
Editor, The Universal Human Rights Journal for students, Feb 2015 – Present
Research Assistant, Copenhagen Business School, June – Oct 2016
Student Research Assistant, Copenhagen Business School, July 2015 – May 2016
Proofreader of PhDs and scientific articles, for Copenhagen Business School, University of Copenhagen, Roskilde University, Aarhus University, Nov 2012 – Feb 2016
Guest Lecturer, University of Copenhagen, March 2014 – June 2015
Student Instructor in International Political Economy, Copenhagen Business School, Sep 2014 – Dec 2014
Student Research Assistant, Copenhagen Business School, Feb 2014 – Sep 2014
Nov 2016 – Sep 2017 Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
Oct 2017 – Aug 2018 Copenhagen Business School, Denmark
Sep 2018 – Feb 2019 McKinsey & Company, Brussels, Belgium
Mar 2019 – Oct 2019 Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1985 to a South African mother and a Danish father. Growing up in Johannesburg was fascinating, difficult and beautiful, especially given South Africa's transition to democracy in 1994 with the election of Nelson Mandela. My childhood was comfortable, but punctuated with experiences that gave me a view into the socio-economic challenges and political tensions that a nascent democracy must confront as well as the subsequent integration of many different societal groups. This process has been successful in some ways, for example, an expanding middle- and upper-class as well as the emergence of an eclectic and wonderfully vibrant culture; but it has been challenging in other dimensions, most distressingly, the many citizens that still live in dire poverty. The context of my childhood was thus rife with politically stimulating conversations as well as a persistant exploration of what exactly it meant to be South African. Such an experience has stayed with me in the form of an ever curious and analytical stance to the society in which I live. I moved to Copenhagen when I was 21 to explore my Danish roots and learn the Danish language. This experience was fundamental to my integration into Danish society, which I see as a hard-won success, as it has entailed a lot of patience as well as energy to consistently engage in Danish culture and politics - that is, develop a substantive Danish identity - while still retaining my own sense of South African identity, which is very important to me. In Denmark I pursued my tertiary education at Copenhagen Business School, first earning a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration & Sociology, and then a Master’s degree in International Business & Politics. During my Master’s degree, I did an exchange period in Italy, where I studied Constitutional Law, with which I’ve become fascinated. Finally, the strong focus on multi-disciplinarity and pluralistic research approaches during my undergrad and graduate degree has inspired me to pursue this PhD. I am very grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the exciting GEM-STONES programme.
Haagensen, N. (Forthcoming). “Judicially-Backed Mutation: Practices at the Legal Frontiers of the Eurozone Crisis”, in Madsen, Mikael Rask, Fernanda G. Nicola and Antoine Vauchez (eds), Researching the CJEU: Methodological Shifts and Law's Embeddedness. Cambridge University Press.
Haagensen, N. (Forthcoming, 2020). “Transnational Networks of the Sovereign Debt Restructuring Regime”, in Hasselbalch, Jacob & George Christou (eds), Global Networks and European Actors. Navigating and Managing Complexity. London: Routledge.
Haagensen, N. (2020) European Legal Networks in Crisis: The Legal Construction of Economic Policy. Frederiksberg: Copenhagen Business School [Phd], 321 p. (Ph.d. Serie, No. 17.2020).
Haagensen, N. & Henriksen, L. F. (2020). “Social Network Analysis” in Morin, Jean-Frédéric, Christian Olsson and Ece Özlem Atikcan (eds). Key Concepts in Research Methods. Oxford University Press.
Haagensen, N. (2020). “Legally Recognising the Authority of the Eurogroup”. GEM-STONES Policy Briefs.
Haagensen, N., Lisa Haagensen and Alexander Andersson. 2016. “Categorization and Context: Towards an Interdisciplinary Approach to Human Rights”. The Universal: Annual Human Rights Review, Vol. 1.
- presented paper ‘European Legal Professionals in Crisis’ at department workshop, January 2020, Copenhagen Business School
- presented PhD at final seminar for department at Copenhagen Business School, November 2019
- attended a Methods Workshop at Copenhagen University on "Quantitative Data & Web Data Collection For Legal Studies", October 2018
- attended a Workshop on Concepts at CBS, March 2018
- presented paper at Danish Sociology Congress 2018 called "Networks as Stories: German Legal Experts"
- presented paper at ISA 2018 Conference called "Mobilization of European Legal Networks in Euro-crisis law"
- presented paper for Enlighten Workshop, June 2017
- presented PhD at Early Career Seminar at CBS September 2017
- attended a Methods Workshop on Social Network Analysis at CBS, October 2017
- attended the ULB Political Science Seminar 2016-2017