Institutionalising European Citizens’ Assemblies
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Citizens’ assemblies have gained popularity as instruments of effective and meaningful citizen participation. In the complex transnational context of EU policy-making, citizens’ assemblies can bring citizens and policy-makers closer, promote truly transnational political debates and improve the quality of the EU democracy and policies. But how can citizens’ assemblies be introduced into the EU legal and institutional framework, and its policy processes? What functions should citizens’ assemblies perform? And how should their work be organised to ensure they are democratic, well-functioning and effective instruments of policy-making and citizen participation in the EU?
This paper provides answers to these questions by introducing a model for the institutionalisation of European Citizens’ Assemblies. It describes the processes, main bodies and institutions that need to be involved and explores how citizens’ assemblies can be integrated into the EU’s institutional and legal set-up.