Who guards the guardian’s guardian?

Throughout this paper I tested the relationship between comitology and the democratic deficit in the European Union. My work consisted in checking to what extent the revealed preferences of member states towards the highly contested “Patents on Life” as framed within the Biotech Directive 98/44/EC are articulated inside the comitology “Committee on Life Sciences, Genomics and Biotechnology for Health”. I engaged in Qualitative analysis, namely Process Tracing conducted through Within Case and Document Analysis, since it allowed for the evaluation of both rival hypotheses crystallized in the literature: intergovernmental bargaining or supranational deliberation. I measured comitology as the locus of intergovernmentalism or supranationalism by using as proxies the revealed attitudes towards EU legislative outcomes. When checked both against the theoretical expectations and the official attitudes of the Member States as proxies for measuring their interest, the Summary Records of the analyzed comitology Committee portrays its working input as a representative of the supranational interest. The data analyzed – showed little congruence between Member States’ expressed preferences and the Biotech Committee’s working output. In conclusion, comitology committees represent a locus for supranational interest representation as opposed to intergovernmental interest representation (the initial purpose of their creation). Whether it is at this particular level that further action should be taken in order to check and consequently address potential breaches in the democratic decisionmaking process will make the testing object for further research. My current findings cluster observations around two composed concepts: “multilevel governance” and “guardianship” – which I have called “the interaction effect” and can be generalized inside the framework of First Pillar Legislation, concerned with deepening the Single Market.