Europeanization and democratization: aspects of the Greek case
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Europeanization, by definition refers to causal links between the EU and domestic, national changes. Every particular case that involves interaction between EU and member states demonstrates a different aspect of what Europeanization might mean. The intention of this paper is first to demonstrate some significant dimensions of the impact of Europeanization processes on aspects of Greece’s polity, politics and policies. More specifically, we try to identify the effects on the executive and legislative power, parties and party system as well as on civil society. In doing so, we will form a clearer picture concerning which conceptualizations of Europeanization pertain to Greece and in which ways. Another important consideration is related to the fact that the impact of the EU on each state elicits manifold responses and adaptation patterns. Hence, the various effects and influences need to be delineated so as to demarcate the extent and the degree of the impact effectuated by the EU. In this paper we try also to probe into the normative elements that relate to a broader democratization project propounded by the EU and the way that have been received by Greece, that is whether or not these elements have contributed to bringing about more democracy and how. In other words, by examining selected instances of political changes caused by Europeanization processes we will be able to assess what Europeanization means in terms of (domestic) democracy. So, the second factor that concerns this paper is how the impact of Europeanization on the institutions, politics and policies of Greece affects their democratic quality especially as regards the executive, the parliament, the parties and party system and civil society. That is, how Europeanization has been processed domestically mainly with respect to the democratic practices triggered by the interaction with the EU.