Link to the University of Pittsburgh
Link to the University Library SystemContact us link
AEI Banner

"Discontinuity: Another Source for the EU’s Democratic Deficit?"

Konig, Thomas. (2007) "Discontinuity: Another Source for the EU’s Democratic Deficit?". In: UNSPECIFIED, Montreal, Canada. (Unpublished)

Download (319Kb) | Preview


    This study evaluates discontinuity that is induced by the two-stage lawmaking process of EU directives and discussed in the jurisprudential literature as another source for the EU’s democratic deficit. While directives must be transposed into national law, their lengthy transposition period has raised the normative question about the extent to which governments of today can politically and reliably commit domestic majorities of tomorrow. From a political science perspective, this jack-in-the-box-effect is particularly critical in systems with restrictive voting procedures and high agency loss because the parliamentary principal is unable to learn about the behaviour of the governmental agent and can hardly change or amend the decision of the former government. Hence, the empirical task is to identify the potential for discontinuity in EU lawmaking which requires measuring the governmental activities in the implementation process and to compare the preferences of the former and current majorities. This is the first study which empirically analyzes the potential of discontinuity by combining statistics on the implementation process in the 15 member states with preference indicators for their governments over a period of almost 20 years. The findings reveal that parliaments are almost excluded from this process. On closer inspection, the results show that the preferences of the former and the newly elected representatives differ drastically in about one third of all cases, in particular in Austria, Denmark, France, Sweden – and to a lesser extent – in Ireland, Greece and Luxembourg where public support for European integration has also notably decreased in recent years.

    Export/Citation:EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII (Chicago style) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
    Social Networking:
    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Subjects for non-EU documents: Countries > Ireland
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > europeanisation/europeanization & European identity
    Countries > Denmark
    Countries > Luxembourg
    Countries > France
    Countries > Sweden
    Countries > Greece
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > political affairs > democracy/democratic deficit
    Countries > Austria
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Conference: European Union Studies Association (EUSA) > Biennial Conference > 2007 (10th), May 17-19, 2007
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 09 May 2008
    Page Range: p. 26
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:51

    Actions (login required)

    View Item

    Document Downloads