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The role of civil society organisations in Brussels is debated. Some view them as representatives of their members and thus as legitimising agents for policy-making in the European Union. Others see them as being elitist and out of touch with their membership bases, therefore ill-suited to promote democracy at the EU level. Taking civil society organisations in the EU’s external relations as an example, Meike Rodekamp submits these controversial views to a reality check. Interviews with representatives of civil society organisations in Brussels and their member organisations in the EU show that the Brussels offices have not lost contact with their members. However, member organisations differ substantially in their participation in internal decision-making processes, which raises doubts about the legitimacy gains through civil society participation in EU policy-making.
· The Representative Role of Civil Society Organisations in Democracy
· Methods, Case Selection, and the Civil Society Organisation Sample
· The Formal and the Relational Dimension of Civil Society Organisation Representativeness
· Researchers and students of political science, in particular in the fields of EU integration, global governance, NGO research, and democratisation
· Practitioners of EU politics, in particular EU institution officials, NGO and business association representatives, government representatives, lobbyists in general
Dr. Meike Rodekamp works as a policy analyst for the German Council of Science and Humanities (Wissenschaftsrat) in Cologne, Germany.
Content Level »Research
Keywords »Civil Society Organizations - Democracy - European Union - Legitimacy - Representation
The Representative Role of Civil Society Organisations in Democracy.- Methods, Case Selection, and the Civil Society Organisation Sample.- The Formal and the Relational Dimension of Civil Society Organisation Representativeness.