Shaw, Jo (2003) What’s in a Convention? Process and substance in the project of European constitution-building. IHS Political Science Series: 2003, No. 89. [Working Paper]
The paper studies aspects of the process and substance of the deliberations of the Convention on the Future of the Union, against the backdrop of the longer term development of a Constitution for the European Union. It examines some of the issues which have arisen over the course of the longer term debate about European constitutionalism, including the normative basis of a putative Constitution for the EU. In the main part of the paper, the primary objective is to elaborate in more detail the ways in which the Convention’s work was structured by the complex procedural and substantive heritage of the Union’s constitutional acquis. It focuses on the Convention as an addition to an already complex and multi-facetted constitution-building process, and looks at some of the principles which it has proposed to bring into the constitutional architecture, such as the explicit articulation of the supremacy principle. It concludes that at times the fit between the ‘old’ and the ‘new’ in the constitutional process and substance developed by the Convention is far from satisfactory.
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