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Bridging the Gap? – New Volume on the ECI Published in IEP’s Book Series

Edited by Katrin Böttger, Maxim­ilian Conrad und Annette Knaut and with two contri­bu­tions of Julian Plottka, research associate at the IEP, Volume 97 of IEP’s book series offers a critical, but nonetheless cautiously optimistic perspective on the oppor­tu­nities and constraints of the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI), the novel tool of transna­tional partic­i­patory democracy. Bringing together a wide range of ECI researchers, the volume combines theoretical discus­sions on the nature and contri­bution of the ECI with empirical perspec­tives on the experi­ences of the first initia­tives launched since April 2012. The contri­bu­tions show that the ECI is difficult to place as an instrument of partic­i­patory democracy, owing to consid­erable ambiguity as regards its merely indirect agenda-setting function. More impor­tantly, the ECI has so far only in part been able to fulfill the high expec­ta­tions held by academics, activists and ECI organizers alike. The conclu­sions of the volume are, therefore, somewhat ambivalent: while the ECI clearly has signif­icant democ­ra­tizing potential, the experience of the first three years also points to a consid­erable need for reform.

More Infor­mation and order condi­tions are available on the website of Nomos and on IEP’s publi­cation website.