From National to International Linkages
Author: William A. Maloney,Jan W. Van Deth
Publisher: Edward Elgar Publishing
Category: Political Science
View: 1011The research presented in this book based on new primary data demonstrates that in terms of civil society actors adapting to the European political space the Europeanization process has an uneven development. This innovative book integrates top-down approaches for the study of relationships within the developing EU-multilevel system (i.e., the consequences of Europeanization for civil society at the local level) and bottom-up approaches (i.e., the consequences of civil society for the process of European integration and democracy in the EU). The contributors argue that exploration of these recursive linkages requires a rethinking of the relationships between (local, national, and trans-national) civil society on the one hand, and multi-level governance on the other. In analyzing the opportunities for civil society associations to contribute to European integration and decision-making from various perspectives, the following findings are presented, amongst others: engagement with and confidence in the EU (compared to national institutions) is relatively weak among associational members party elites play a key gatekeeper role in the European space the EU and interest groups have had limited success in stimulating the development of citizen engagement, civil society and social capital in various countries. In the rapidly expanding field of research on democratic decision-making in Europe, this book will be welcomed by academics and scholars alike at postgraduate levels and above. Experts working in the field of European decision-making (such as lawyers and lobbyists) who are looking for conclusions based on high-quality empirical research will also find much in this book to engage them.