Beyond legal transposition: regulatory agencies and de facto convergence of EU rail liberalization

Fabrizio De Francesco, Graziella Castro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
44 Downloads (Pure)


Notwithstanding its maturity, the literature on Europeanisation and compliance tends to overlook the implementation stages beyond the legal transposition of single-market regulatory reforms. This article explains the cross-national variation in the actual implementation of a fully liberalised and open rail market among the EU-15. The empirical findings from a statistical analysis of an index of railway liberalisation highlight the importance of the establishment of national regulatory agencies. Member states with an independent regulatory agency converge faster towards the EU model of full liberalisation. This conditional effect of EU railway harmonisation is enhanced by the presence of new entrants that activate the institutional functions of agencies as enforcers of EU legislation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-388
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of European Public Policy
Issue number3
Early online date29 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2018


  • EU compliance
  • EU regulatory governance
  • de facto implementation
  • liberalization of utility markets
  • Rail Liberalisation Index


Dive into the research topics of 'Beyond legal transposition: regulatory agencies and de facto convergence of EU rail liberalization'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this