Title: The crisis and the ordinary citizen: the role of the people in EU democracies torn by the financial crisis

Authors: Cláudia Toriz Ramos

Addresses: Universidade Fernando Pessoa, Pç. 9 Abril, 349, 4249-004 Porto, Portugal

Abstract: This paper discusses the possible role of the European Union (EU) citizens, in the context of the crisis. It is argued that there is not yet a single public sphere for the whole EU, given the pervasiveness of the national level and EU's mostly indirect legitimacy. The EU itself has often been accused of carrying a 'democratic deficit'. Recent events stemming from the sovereign debts crisis may foster the debate on the EU's 'democratic deficit' by fuelling the disjunction between the citizens and their political representatives. The questions thus discussed throughout this paper focus on the mechanisms of EU's legitimacy, on the role of the citizens in the crisis and the subsequent prospects for European and EU democracies.

Keywords: financial crisis; democratic legitimacy; European Union; democratic deficit; political participation; EU citizens; elections; sovereign debts crisis.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHRCS.2013.055921

International Journal of Human Rights and Constitutional Studies, 2013 Vol.1 No.3, pp.278 - 290

Available online: 16 Aug 2013 *

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