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Keywords:

  • Swiss Energy Policy;
  • European Union;
  • Network Governance;
  • Regulatory Forums

The European Union establishes external relations with third countries in different ways. Network governance is considered as an organisational opening that provides for more cooperative flexibility and inclusion. In this article, I examine to what extent network governance enables Switzerland's inclusion in the European energy sector. I argue that, as the network governance of EU energy policy becomes more institutionalized – from the regulatory forums of Florence and Madrid to the European Regulators Group for Electricity and Gas (ERGEG) – Switzerland tends to be excluded. I further argue that this lack of political inclusion is partly compensated by patterns of market governance that favor Swiss firms. Neither network nor market governance, however, is a sufficient form of coordination and traditional options such as bilateral agreements (electricity) and autonomous adaptation (gas) seem inevitable.