• Wiener, A (PI)

Project: EU Commission

Project Details


RECON seeks to clarify whether democracy is possible under conditions of pluralism, diversity and complex multilevel governance. This includes taking proper heed of the challenges to democracy at EU and national levels. RECON spells out three different models for democratic reconstitution:
- democracy can be reconstituted at the national level with a concomitant reframing of the EU as a functional regulatory regime;
- democracy can be reconstituted through establishing the EU as a federal state based on a collective identity; and
- democracy can be reconstituted through developing a post-national Union with an explicit cosmopolitan imprint.

RECON assesses which approach to democratic reconstitution is most viable - in empirical and normative terms - through analyzing the EU's constitutionalisation process; the institutional complex at the EU and member state levels; the role and status of gender within the enlarged Europe; the democratic quality and governing capacity of the Union within tax/fiscal and foreign/security policy; and the multilevel configuration of civil society/public sphere. It examines the effects of external transnationalisation on the EU and discerns democratic lessons from comparison with non-European complex multilevel entities.

RECON enhances knowledge of the enlargement process: the transition and consolidation of democracy in the new member states and of the overall challenges posed by globalization to established democracies. RECON identifies strategies through which democracy can be strengthened and participation of citizens increased, and provides a set of policy recommendations in line with these. It analyses measures to rectify institutional and constitutional defects; gendered and social inequality; and measures to rectify democratic deficits in different policy areas. It enhances the state of the art by developing and testing a theory of deliberative democratic supranationalism.
Effective start/end date1/01/0731/03/09


  • European Commission


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