Onderco, M. (2018) “Parliamentarians in government delegations: An old question still not answered”. Cooperation & Conflict, 53(5), 411-428
Why do governments include parliamentarians in the delegations to international negotiations? Conduct of the diplomatic negotiations is among the most tightly controlled prerogatives of the executive, and executives have been historically dominant in the conduct of foreign policy. This article draws on the participation of members of parliaments in national delegations to the Review Conferences of the Non-Proliferation Treaty over the past 40 years. The emerging patterns show that legitimation through oversight is unlikely to be the reason for participation. Drawing on literature on institutional variation in legislative–executive relations, the data indicate that executives are more interested in co-opting the parliamentarians, in order to make them less opposed to the government’s policy.