Social Europe: Decentralising and Democratising While Reforming European Economic Governance

In a recent piece for Social Europe, I make the case that the Conference on the Future of Europe needs to address how EU governance can be refitted to end the crisis of legitimacy.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been something of a wake-up call for the European Union. The EU finally recognised that the eurozone economic policies it had been pursuing since the 1990s—reinforced at the outset of the eurozone crisis in 2010—had been deleterious to the wellbeing of its citizens and the planet.

The obsession with ‘governing by rules and ruling by numbers’ through the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP), focused on low deficit and debts, meant that the EU had failed to invest in its future. Such rules and numbers ensured that those without the ‘fiscal space’ (read southern Europe) could not invest, while those with the fiscal space (northern Europe) did not. The EU’s eurozone governance engendered a ‘crisis of legitimacy’, in which doubling down on the procedural rules led to poor economic performance and increasingly toxic politics.

Continue reading on the Social Europe website>>


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