About us

Leading international thinktank and political network


Register for all the latest updates in our regular newsletter

Home Events Events

Bailing out politics:a democratic and constitutional crisis in the EU?

  • Date(s)
    30 April 2012
  • Time
    15:30 - 19:00
Bailing out politics:a democratic and constitutional crisis in the EU?

Policy Network, in partnership with UCL and the Centre for European Reform, are organising an afternoon of high-level discussion and debate hosted at the Belgian Embassy in London.

Roger Liddle and Olaf Cramme will join an notable panel of speakers contributing throughout the event including Charles Grant, Kalypso Nicolaïdis and Philippe De Backer.

The afternoon will commence with a workshop to discuss the topic of 'a democratic and constitutional crisis in the EU?' before an early evening panel debate.

The debate will focus on the current sovereign debt crisis in the Eurozone, which has already had a devastating economic effect on the EU Member States. It has also begun to have ramifications for the very basis on which the Member States and the Union found their democratic and constitutional principles.

The debate about the Union’s deficiencies in democratic accountability and legitimacy is far from new. Yet in the current circumstances, it has arguably reached a new, qualitatively different, stage. On the one hand, current crisis management impinges on democratic standards across Europe and impacts popular attitudes vis-à-vis EU politics.

On the other hand, the debate about the “democratic deficit” has gained a new urgency in face of a strong pressure towards further EU integration as the only solution out of the crisis. These two elements are interrelated and need to be addressed in terms of the way each influences the other.

Paralleling the debate on democracy in and of the EU is a debate on national sovereignty. One claim has been that transfers of national sovereignty to the EU offer a way of overcoming the erosion of sovereignty by markets. Yet, if the use of this power is simply to enforce strict budgetary discipline by the ECB and the Commission, then little is gained by way of enhanced democratic accountability – indeed much may have been lost.

A second issue for debate, therefore, is whether greater economic integration can be achieved without not only undermining democracy at the national level but also failing to replace it at the EU level.


Further information

Share this page

Search events

Events search form