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European Union, A Stakeholders' Democracy

Abstract : Like other governmental and intergovernmental organizations, in the 1990s the European Union has taken a participatory turn in its decision-making and communication policy. The official introduction of the “new European governance” (defined in the White Paper published in 2001) sought to find a lasting institutional solution to the problem of controlling interactions among European policymakers, experts, and interest representatives. The failure of the ratification referendum of the Constitutional Treaty in 2005 opened a new window of opportunity. It seemed necessary to move beyond the “neo-corporatist” model of governance by developing the direct participation of citizens in decision-making processes. Based on empirical work begun in 2005, this article analyzes the (political and intellectual) genesis as well as the conditions of possibility of what is here called institutional participationism, developed as a corrective to “European democracy”. To do so the authors explore the European reform laboratories, where this new procedural theory of European power has been imagined. The article demonstrates the institutionalization of this European participationism by tracing its genealogy from the White Paper on Governance to the European Citizens’ Initiative. The authors focus in particular on the role played by social scientists as experts in these democratic innovations.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, April 4, 2018 - 5:44:35 PM
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Philippe Aldrin, Nicolas Hubé. European Union, A Stakeholders' Democracy. Gouvernement & action publique, Presses de sciences po, 2016, 2 (2), ⟨10.3917/gap.162.0125⟩. ⟨halshs-01758787⟩

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