Making Sense of the EU: Democracy in Europe and Europe’s Democratization

Issue Date October 2003
Volume 14
Issue 4
Page Numbers 71-85
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While democracy in Europe took a very long time to consolidate, the democratization of Europe has only just begun and remains a rather remote prospect. As for the democratization of Europe’s primary supranational institution, the European Union or EU—that has remained a project which has yet to capture the imagination of its peoples or overcome the resistance of its politicians. The impact of the nondemocratization of the EU upon democracy in Europe is a process—not (yet) an outcome. There are at least two good reasons why it may be timely to begin experimenting with continental democracy sooner rather than later.

About the Author

Philippe C. Schmitter, professor emeritus in the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute, previously taught at the University of Chicago and Stanford University. He is the coeditor (with Guillermo O’Donnell and Laurence Whitehead) of the seminal four-volume series Transitions from Authoritarian Rule.

View all work by Philippe C. Schmitter