In this Master’s Thesis I investigate the concept of democratic legitimacy in Europe. By first analyzing the different components and forms of legitimacy in the nation state versus the European Union, it enables me to make a qualified political sociological discussion on the status of European democracy today. The European Union is often criticized for its ‘democratic deficit’ in opposition to an alleged democratic legitimacy of the nation state. Instead of blindly accepting this simplified antagonism I expose both political levels (EU/nation state) to a critical examination. In my analysis, based on a wide theoretical framework, I uncover that both the EU and the nation state are struggling to find a satisfying balance between efficient technocratic output and authentic democratic input. Popular distrust of politicians (and institutions) and declining voter turnout in both EU and national parliament elections, are among the empirical symptoms of what seems to be an emerging crisis of representative democracy. On the basis of both qualitative and quantitative data and theoretically supported analytical arguments, I therefore conclude that it is possible to identify signs of a converging democratic legitimacy crisis in Europe's political systems. Furthermore, European democracy as we know it, is not only being challenged by internal distrust, but is also put under high external pressure from an uncontrollable globalized world economy.
|Uddannelser||Socialvidenskab, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat|
|Udgivelsesdato||28 jan. 2015|
|Vejledere||Torben Bech Dyrberg|