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A Political Sociology of European Democracy. 2 A Political Sociology of European Democracy Week 7 Lecture 1 Lecturer Paul Blokker.

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Presentation on theme: "A Political Sociology of European Democracy. 2 A Political Sociology of European Democracy Week 7 Lecture 1 Lecturer Paul Blokker."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Political Sociology of European Democracy

2 2 A Political Sociology of European Democracy Week 7 Lecture 1 Lecturer Paul Blokker

3 3 Part III: The Political Sociological Study of European Democracy Specific case-studies Political sociology of elites Political sociology of social movements Sociology of migration Forms of critique on EU democracy Methodologies Introduction Governo Locale

4 4 Introduction Governo Locale

5 5 Part III: The Political Sociological Study of European Democracy Political Sociology

6 6 Governo Locale Political Sociology

7 7 Governo Locale Post-national democracy

8 8 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - There is a recent renewal in attachments to rights: both Obama and Hollande refer to gay rights and same sex marriages in public debate; - Also in Italy, rights have new coinage: the Corte di Cassazione recently ruled in favour of gay marriages; Post-national democracy

9 9 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - Such renewed relevance of rights has a lot to do with a European dimension; - The European Court of Human Rights and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights provide the basis for the protection and extension of rights; - Also the Lisbon Treaty contributes to a rights extension: for instance, the right to a Citizens Initiative. Post-national democracy

10 10 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - Europe is thus not merely about economic predominance and narrow-minded politics; - Europe is also about rights, and offers an additional level of protection and enablement to citizens; - Economic and monetary integration is paralleled by an integration by means of rights; Post-national democracy

11 11 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - Europe is thus not merely about economic predominance and narrow-minded politics; - Europe is also about rights, and offers an additional level of protection and enablement to citizens; - Economic and monetary integration is paralleled by an integration by means of rights; Post-national democracy

12 12 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - Europe is thus not merely about economic predominance and narrow-minded politics; - Europe is also about rights, and offers an additional level of protection and enablement to citizens; - Economic and monetary integration is paralleled by an integration by means of rights; Post-national democracy

13 13 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - Europe suffers from a double deficit: 1. democratic (input, participation); 2. legitimacy (output, for whom? solidarity); - These deficits have become more evident in the current crisis; - Many now argue for a new constitutional project, including a reinforcement of the EP; Post-national democracy

14 14 Governo Locale The new era of rights Stefano Rodotà - If Europe needs redemocratization the development of a common economic policy is not enough, it would merely create a European democracy without a people; - Current elections result point to times that are changing: citizens actions work through rights, and citizens are the indispensable protagonists of a possible new era. Post-national democracy

15 15 Governo Locale A Porous Democracy Will Save Europe Andrea Manzella – La Repubblica - The real democratic question of our times is the relationship between the democratic state and the financial economy; - The problems of the Euro and of the crisis in general have turned into a kind of subterranean referendum on being pro or contra the EU; Post-national democracy

16 16 Governo Locale A Porous Democracy Will Save Europe Andrea Manzella – La Repubblica - Three radical changes: 1. States as Masters of the Treaties Treaties as Masters of States; 2. The democratic deficit has descended to the state level: an induced democratic deficit; 3. A rapidly increased visibility of the EU in national public debates. Post-national democracy

17 17 Governo Locale A Porous Democracy Will Save Europe Andrea Manzella – La Repubblica - A new political energy is visible; - It is not true that this energy is necessarily populist; - This energy could also be pushing towards a porous democracy which is able to connect national democracies and a EU democracy. Post-national democracy

18 18 Governo Locale Part III: The Political Sociological Study of European Democracy Political Sociology

19 19 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors (Georgakakis & Weisbein 2010) - In political scientific and other approaches to European integration, actors have not figured prominently, at least not in individualistic or group terms (exception: history of EU integration); - A prominent emphasis is on states (intergovernmentalism) and institutions (the Council, the Commission); EU democracy analysed

20 20 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors (Georgakakis & Weisbein 2010) - An important sociological thread in European research is endorsing an approach that focuses on actors in their own right; - A political sociology (i.e. focussing on actors that are important for European politics) might engage with both elite actors on the EU level as well as social actors, on the level of society; EU democracy analysed

21 21 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - The EU can be understood as consisting of an institutional field (or several), with its own rules, norms, rites and rituals, forms of interaction, distinct types of capital, distinct discourses (cf. Bourdieu for the idea of field); - The political field encompasses a sphere that is about representation and protest, a universalistic, public/civic language, distinct rituals (European summits, conventions, presidencies), social and cultural capital. EU democracy analysed

22 22 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - A focus on the EU as a multi-level political field emphasizes : 1. the political struggle between groups and individuals over the object of Europe/the EU; 2. a focus on the political agents (political elites, civil activists, intellectuals, bureaucrats) involved in the construction of the EU/European integration (cf. Kauppi 2005) EU democracy analysed

23 23 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - Two types of factors hamper the democratic quality of the EU : 1. the executive-domination of the political field; 2. the European political field is dominated by national politics and political cultures (Kauppi 2005); EU democracy analysed

24 24 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field 1. The concept of field calls for a different approach to EU institutions, that is, historically tracing internal cleavages and analysing the positions of different types of actors (full time Europeans vs. part-time); 2. An emphasis on elite configurations as present in the social field of the EU (shifting importance as, for instance, in the recent rise of experts); 3. The effect of the structure of positions on how agents think about Europe. EU democracy analysed

25 25 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - A political sociology of elites might reveal important insights in the social, academic, and professional backgrounds of those in charge; - A political sociology of EU also contributes to a more intricate understanding of relations and conflict between relevant political actors (for instance, between political and bureaucratic actors, e.g., the EC and the DGs); EU democracy analysed

26 26 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - Focussing on elites and their specific backgrounds as well as communities has important advantages: 1. Enriching and historicising existing studies in EU institutions; 2. Reconceptualizing the institutionalization of the EU (using, e.g., different fields); EU democracy analysed

27 27 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - A sociology focussed on social agents and groups might start from the ideas of: - interaction; - conflicts and tensions; - the notion of habitus (dispositions to act); - ideas and discourses; - relational contexts (fields, institutions, organizations); EU democracy analysed

28 28 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - Mapping out the persons that populate the EU institutions should start from their biographies and prosopographies; - In this way, actors positions can be mapped out (origin, institutions) as well as the structure of resources and experiences (incl. social capital); EU democracy analysed

29 29 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - An example is: DG Regio is populated by geographers and urban sociologists whereas DG Comp is populated by economic jurists; habitus/epistemic communities; networks; power resources EU democracy analysed

30 30 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - By sociologically researching actors one contributes to a more complex picture of European politics: - duality national-supranational (?) - official role of EU institutions (e.g. Commission=supranational); - organizational cultures; - importance of specific skills (e.g. technocratic in 1990s, management and financial in 2000s); - importance of ideas/dispositions. EU democracy analysed

31 31 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - A political sociology can also fruitfully turn to the study of European society; - Such a study can include the attention for the social foundations of European integration, including in the form of matrimonial choices, sports (football as European integration), intra- EU mobility, towns twinning, Capitals of Culture, consumption patterns, professional identities, etc. EU democracy analysed

32 32 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field - Actors of European society include individuals, professional communities, students, voluntary associations, social classes); - A focus on social actors helps us to understand how non-political issues may produce a relatively integrated community (Georgakakis & Weisbein 2010); EU democracy analysed

33 33 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field Benefits of a focus on European society: 1. An understanding of the diversity of groups and actors engaged in European integration/routine interaction on European level leads to a re-evaluation of what European integration is about; 2. A shift in focus on actors until recently seen as less relevant (regional/local governments, national political ministries, experts, local interest groups); EU democracy analysed

34 34 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field Benefits of a focus on European society: 1. An understanding of the diversity of groups and actors engaged in European integration/routine interaction on European level leads to a re-evaluation of what European integration is about; 2. A shift in focus on actors until recently seen as less relevant (regional/local governments, national political ministries, experts, local interest groups); EU democracy analysed

35 35 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors The EU institutional field Benefits of a focus on European society: 1. An understanding of the diversity of groups and actors engaged in European integration/routine interaction on European level leads to a re-evaluation of what European integration is about; 2. A shift in focus on actors until recently seen as less relevant (regional/local governments, national political ministries, experts, local interest groups); EU democracy analysed

36 36 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors Eurostars and Eurocities (Adrian Favell) - A sociology of free moving professionals in the EU; - Contribution to understanding the slowness with which a European society – in terms of cross-border settlement – emerges in the EU; - A sociological study of how European society is - or is - not created through individual life choices and career trajectories; EU democracy analysed

37 37 Governo Locale EU democracy analysed

38 38 Governo Locale EU democracy analysed

39 39 Governo Locale EU democracy analysed

40 40 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors Eurostars and Eurocities (Adrian Favell) - Even if one of the core missions of the EU is to break down barriers to free movement, surprisingly few people move and settle permanently outside of their own country of origin; - The percentage of the EU population is well under 5% and much behind migration of non-EU people; - In highly global countries such as Britain or the Netherlands the figure is under 1,5%; EU democracy analysed

41 41 Governo Locale A Political Sociology of European Actors Eurostars and Eurocities (Adrian Favell) - Favell attempts a novel approach to the study of globalization and Europeanization, individual- focussed and using qualitative methods (participant observation, oral history); - He focusses on distinct Eurocities (Brussels, Amsterdam) and Eurostars (young professionals); - Among other things, he tries to understand the level of Europeanization in terms of intra-EU mobility and the importance of EU citizenship; EU democracy analysed


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