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    UK influence series: Do British MEPs win key positions of power in the European Parliament?

UK influence series: Do British MEPs win key positions of power in the European Parliament?

The extent to which British MEPs are appointed to key positions in the European Parliament can be expected to have an impact on their influence over the EU’s legislative process. In the latest article in our UK influence series, Simon Hix and Giacomo Benedetto assess how successful British MEPs have been in this respect since 2004. They note that […]

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Raising MEPs’ salaries causes them to attend fewer meetings, but cutting their salaries increases their attendance rate.

What impact does a parliamentarian’s salary have on the amount of effort they put into representing citizens? Naci Mocan and Duha Altindag outline results from a study on salary changes which took place as part of a change in procedures in the European Parliament in 2009. They note that MEPs who experienced an increase in salary in 2009 attended fewer […]

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Brussels blog round-up for 22 – 28 June: MEPs in the limelight, France vs. the European Commission, and the EU’s new budget deal.

Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre and the crisis  Friday sees a meeting of the European Council in Brussels. Ahead of the summit, the European Council on Foreign Relations presents the view from seven of the EU’s capitals. The European Commission released its draft budget for 2014-2020 on Wednesday. Open Europe looks at […]

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Giving a voice to Eurosceptic MEPs in the European Parliament is an important part of making the integration process more legitimate

While Eurosceptic parties at the national level have received significant attention from political scientists, Euroscepticism within the EU’s own institutions has generally been overlooked. Nathalie Brack uses role theory to assess the experiences of Eurosceptic MEPs in the European Parliament, finding that they can broadly be situated into three distinct categories: absentees, public orators, and pragmatists. She argues that far […]

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There is only a weak relationship between the way MEPs vote in the European Parliament and the preferences of their citizens.

Serguei Kaniovski and Dennis C. Mueller assess the notion that a ‘democratic deficit’ exists in the EU by examining how well MEPs represent the preferences of their citizens in the European Parliament. They find that there is no strong link between citizen preferences and voting in the Parliament, with MEPs voting largely in accordance with their own views, not those of their […]

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Brussels blog round up for 7 – 13 July: Vaccine bonds under threat, Romania’s referendum row, and will the UK become an EU free-rider?

Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU Centre EU Logos at Blogactiv.eu looks at the European Parliament’s call for a directive on basic banking services, as 30 million adult Europeans lack a bank account. Later, they discuss the creation of a European observatory for cultural and religious pluralism, which will focus on the plight […]

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A veto of the European Parliament against ACTA would be a way for MEPs to reassert themselves against member states.

Recent months have seen protests across Europe against the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), which seeks to protect intellectual property. Valentin Kreilinger argues that the European Parliament now has an opportunity to take into account the views of Europe’s citizens and veto the agreement, meaning that the agreement would have to be renegotiated. At the end of March, the International Trade […]

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Brussels blog round up for 24-30 March 2012: Strikes in Spain, a new €800 billion bailout fund, and divine intervention for the Euro

Chris Gilson and Julian Kirchherr take a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU Centre Should there be only one seat (home) for the European Parliament? It costs European taxpayers approximately 200 million euros a year to move the European Parliament between Brussels (Belgium) and Strasbourg (France) every two weeks. Now Martin Schulz, the President of the European Parliament, has confirmed […]

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Book Review: The Psychology of Politicians by Ashley Weinberg

Based on research with politicians from the UK, Poland and Italy, this collection of essays hopes to offer new psychological insights into what makes our leaders tick. Suitable for students of political psychology and those looking for a broad introduction to the field, Julian Kirchherr feels that the book does lack an overall coherence and many conclusions are less than ground breaking. The […]

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Why the European Parliament should not be abolished

Former British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw recently argued forcefully that the European Parliament suffered from an ineradicable ‘democratic deficit’ and should be abolished, to be replaced by an assembly of national parliaments. Simon Hix argues that the evidence shows that the European Parliament successfully handles a massive policy agenda, and in most countries engages strongly with European citizens. Reforming the […]

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March 5th, 2012|Simon Hix|19 Comments|