The European Union has long suffered from a lack of democratic accountability. In the past decade, the problem has become particularly acute in the economic management of the Eurozone, the 19 countries of the E.U. that use the Euro (nine members don't). At present, the central institution for management of the Eurozone is the Eurogroup, an informal body led by national finance ministers who report neither to the European Parliament nor to national parliaments but coordinate their activities with the Troika, that is, the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the European Council. Critics accuse the Eurogroup both of lack of transparency and of consistently putting the interests of the rich northwest ahead of the interests of poorer and smaller nations in the east and south. In How to Democratize Europe, four distinguished French scholars describe the diverse problems of the Eurozone and propose a treaty that would establish a parliament for economic policy consisting of selected members of national parliaments. Various contributors then respond to the proposal with support, criticism, or ideas for alternatives.--
"Since the 1960s onwards, the nature and the future of the European Union have been defined in legal terms. Yet, we are still in need of an explanation as to how this entanglement between Law and EU polity-building emerged and how it was maintained over time. While most of the literature offers a disembodied account of European legal integration, Brokering Europe reveals the multifaceted roles Euro-lawyers have played in EU polity, notably beyond the litigation arena. In particular, the book points at select transnational groups of multipositioned entrepreneurs that have elevated the role of law in all sorts of EU venues. In doing so, it draws from anew set of intellectual resources (field-theory) and empirical strategies only very recently mobilized for the study of the EU. Grounded on an extensive historical investigation, Brokering Europe provides a revised narrative of the 'constitutionalization of Europe'"
Scholars generally agree that 'independent' institutions such as the European Commission, the European Court of Justice and European Central Bank have created a space and role for themselves that has no equivalent in national political settings. However, we still lack a better understanding of the importance of this independent branch in the EU polity. This article contends that the central relevance of independence is connected to the historically rooted connection between 'independence' and 'international government' – a relationship the history of which can be traced back to the League of Nations' foundational period as the inaugural scene for the nexus between power and knowledge in international politics. Ultimately, this article questions the extent to which this specific grammar of international government has been constitutive of the EC polity in terms of valued modes of legitimacy and types of authority.