European Experts versus Populist National Elites? Reinventing the European Project with Active Citizens
CPS Research Fellow Attila Bartha was invited speaker of the panel 'Equalities, Pluralism and the Value of Citizenship' in the conference 'The Quality of Democracy: 25 Years Later' organized by the CEU Center for EU Enlargement Studies on June 2, 2014.
About the conference
2014 is the 25-year anniversary of the fall of the communist regimes of Eastern and Central Europe, and it also marks the 10-year anniversary of European Union membership for the Visegrád 4. For this reason, an evaluation of the progress made by these states in certain sectors is opportune. Generally, the histories of V4 countries over the last quarter of century are interpreted as a narrative of direct and total progress, emerging from the East and merging with Europe. The European Union, the 2004 enlargement and eventual membership were seen as the most important factor in the building of democracy and a pluralistic society in the East. The adoption of European norms in the areas of public liberties and human rights were taken as a proof of the efficacy of the "soft power" exercised by the Union. However, a decade after achieving full EU membership, there are still issues in some sectors which can be regarded as affecting the quality of democracy. Therefore, a synthetic overview of the quality of democracy and pluralism is in order.
European Experts versus Populist National Elites? Reinventing the European Project with Active Citizens (Download)