The democratic legitimacy of the European Parliament : citizens’ representation within an ever closer Union

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Schiatti, Elena
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The democratic deficit affecting the European Union has become a more and more urgent issue to tackle in order to foresee the future of such unique form of integration. Current economic, political and social crisis have left room to populism and citizens’ mistrust towards community institutions, and above all towards the only directed elected representative chamber, namely the European Parliament. Its democratic legitimacy is at stake; among the possible antidotes: the redefinition of European project’s aims, a harmonised electoral system, the strengthening of supranational political parties and the further integration of Member States’ peoples. Citizens should be able to feel represented also at community level, in order to face together all the challenges posed by an increasing globalisation: only with a fairer and more popular Parliament, the European Union will continue its democratisation process and refill the emotional gap that is seprating it from its citizens.
Second semester University: Université de Strasbourg.
collective identity, democratisation, elections, legitimacy, European Parliament, political participation, European Union