Law and democracy in Europe

This workshop takes stock of the present status of legal-democratic rule in the EU. What are the implications for democratic arrangements of increased executive dominance and technocracy, as well as more differentiation? Are there any prospects for representative-democratic institutions to ‘fight back’?

The workshop is one of four parallel workshops organised as part of the conference Democratic Constitutionalism in Europe on 4-6 November 2014.

It is part of the EuroDiv project Integration and division: Towards a segmented Europe?

Participation upon invitation.

Conveners: Erik O. Eriksen and John Erik Fossum


This workshop focuses on law and democracy and takes stock of the present status of democratic constitutionalism in an EU that is not only still in the throes of crisis with heightened executive dominance and technocracy but that has also become more differentiated.

'Law and democracy in Europe' will start by examining the nature of the crisis and the implications it has for the EU as a political-legal system, and for the EU's relations to its citizens. Particular emphasis will be placed on challenges associated with executive dominance, technocracy and differentiation. With regard to the latter it is useful to examine whether the crisis context is shifting from differentiated integration to differentiation. The latter encompasses differentiated integration but also might include two new differences, namely that some states integrate more closely whilst, at the same time and for connected reasons, others disintegrate from their previous levels of involvement with the Union; and that even notionally full members may come to be regarded as having different membership status.

These developments in turn raise interesting questions for closely associated non-members such as Norway. What are the implications of these developments for democratic arrangements? Are there any prospects for representative-democratic institutions to 'fight back' and restore/improve democracy? What are the implications of differentiation for the theory and the practice of democracy? The question is whether citizens are capable of governing themselves in a multilevel political entity marked by patterns of authority and/or policy-making that vary in unprecedented ways along territorial and functional lines.


Panel 1: The crisis: implications for law and solidarity

Wednesday 5 Nov, 09.00-12.30

Banking on Union: EU governance between risk and uncertainty
Michelle Everson, Birkbeck, University of London

The Eurozone crisis in light of the EU's normativity
Erik O. Eriksen, ARENA, University of Oslo

Is Demoi-cracy a coherent ideal for a democratic European Union?
Daniel Gaus, Goethe University Frankfurt


12.30-13.30  Lunch (Georg Sverdrups hus - stort møterom 1st floor/2. etasje)


Panel 2: The challenges of technocracy and executive dominance

Wednesday 5 Nov, 13.30-16.00

The euro crisis and the executive dominance of EMU: The implications of an intergovernmental union
Sergio Fabbrini, LUISS University, Rome

Depoliticisation versus accountability: The institutional logic of macro-economic surveillance in the EU
Ben Crum, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Holding EU experts to account: The case of economic expertise
Cathrine Holst, ARENA, University of Oslo


19.30  Dinner, Festningen restaurant


Panel 3: How to think of representation in an increasingly differentiated Europe?

Thursday 6 Nov, 09.00-12.30

Mess or system? Colliding modes of representation in the EU
Johannes Pollak, Institute for Advanced Studies, Vienna

An indirect legitimacy argument for a directly elected European Parliament
Chris Lord, ARENA, University of Oslo

Democracy and differentiation in Europe
John Erik Fossum, ARENA, University of Oslo

12:30-13.30  Lunch (Georg Sverdrups hus - stort møterom 1st floor/2. etasje)


ARENA Centre for European Studies
Published Oct. 15, 2014 5:42 PM - Last modified Nov. 3, 2014 2:08 AM