While the constitutional role of the Parliamnet within the system of governance of the EU has advanced markedly, its sociological relevance remains at low ebb. More generally, it is clear that, despite the widening scale and scope of EU-level powers, the salience of specifically EU politics remains low. From a utilitarian perspective, whatever it is that the European parliament usefully does, MEPs do not appear to be changing the fundamentals of Europe's security and prosperity. It may no longer be enough for the parliament to seek to close the democratic deficit in the EU without addressing social change. Indeed, on the hypothesis that European integration is the process of social change, the democratic deficit stems from the failure of the European parliamnet (with other EU institutions) to develop social cohesion on transnational basis. The author examines the Parliamnet's seymbolic, representative and legislative roles. he concludees that the European arliamnet must re-invent itself if it is contribute efficiency to the governance of an emerging post-national society in Europe.
The book promises to be as great a stimulus to understanding the Parliamnet as the author's previous 'Politics and Bureaucracy in the European Community was for the developmant of the European Commision. It will be essential reading for all practitioners and students of European integration, as well as for national policy-makers, business and the media.
Publisher: Federal Trust for Education & Research