2910 Boulevard Edouard-Montpetit
Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC H3T
Ateliers de la démocratie, avec Richard Bellamy (UCL).
EU institutions are best conceived as representing the peoples of Europe. Section 1 argues that democratic legitimacy involves governments being representative of a people and specifies the characteristics a people need to possess for such representation to be possible. No EU demos exists with these features. However, in an increasingly interconnected world, governments have incentives to form associations of democratic peoples that preserve their capacity to represent them via a process of republican intergovernmentalism. Section 2 contends the EU’s system of representation corresponds to such an association and facilitates mutual respect and fair terms of cooperation between the peoples of Europe. However, moves away from such a union of peoples towards greater political unity involve an inevitable loss of representativeness and democratic legitimacy. As a result, the euro crisis poses a dilemma: for its resolution appears to require the resources of a European democracy in circumstances that can only sustain a demoicracy.