Capitalism, democracy, and the European Union
Title: Capitalism, democracy, and the European Union
Author: WIESNER, Claudia
Citation: Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Politikwissenschaft ; Comparative governance and politics, 2016, Vol. 10, No. 3-4, pp. 219-239
ISSN: 1865-2646; 1865-2654
Engaging with articles published in this journal by Wolfgang Merkel, Wolfgang Streeck and Colin Crouch, the present article seeks to elaborate on the relation between capitalism and democracy in the European Union. The key question addressed by the article is whether and to what extent democracy is possible within the EU, or whether the EU must be regarded as the Trojan horse of capitalism. The first two sections consist of a brief discussion of the main arguments raised in the foregoing debate and of the institutional and politico-cultural dimensions of democracy in the EU’s multilevel system. The central section of the paper is devoted to a discussion of the complex contexts and actors influencing the relation between democracy and capitalism, or rather, economic liberalization and deregulation, in the EU. In the fifth and final section I consider whether and to what extent democracy is possible within the EU’s system of liberal capitalism and how representative democracy in the EU and the multilevel system could be safeguarded and improved under current conditions. To this end, I present six possible pathways for institutional and democratic reform that are of varying complexity.
First Online: 07 December 2016
Type of Access: openAccess
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