Breathing Room for Democracy: The Restriction of Political Participation in EU Citizenship through Economics


  • Jedidja van Boven


Abstract. Ever since its conceptualization, the initiators of the European project have struggled to strike the right balance between economic and political spheres. One dimension through which the Union has attempted to instill a sense of belonging is European Union citizenship. However, this paper argues that the governance of EU citizenship in the political-legal sphere have resulted in its continued relegation to economic dimensions, which may adversely impact the democratic health of the European Union. The first section will outline the role of political participation in EU citizenship as expressed in EU law, and point to the ways in which economic dimensions are overemphasized. The second section will describe the ways in which democracy is jeopardized by the depoliticization of EU citizenship, as well as EU policymaking in general. The paper will conclude by pointing to the potential pitfalls implied by an overly economic lens of citizenship when it comes to the democratic future of Europe.

Key words: EU citizenship, political participation, democracy, citizenship rights, neoliberalism



2021-09-10 — Actualitzat el 2021-09-11