Union Citizenship Revisited: Multilateral Democracy as Normative Standard for European Citizenship.

Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 41 (8):1254- 1275 (2014)
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Union Citizenship as currently implemented in the European Union introduces a distinct concept of citizenship that necessitates an adequate normative approach. The objective of this paper is to assess EU Citizenship against the theoretical background of multilateral democracy. This approach is specifically suited for this task, as it does not rely on a nation-state paradigm or the presumption of a further transformation into a federation or union. We propose three criteria by which to assess multilevel citizenship: equal individual rights, equal sovereignty of peoples and the balancing of individuals' and peoples' interests. We argue that the current practice of Union Citizenship does not fully meet the proposed standards, regarding equal rights within and equal access to, the political system. Based on our assessment, we propose reform options of access to national and supranational citizenship and argue for supranational participation rights and equal transnational rights to gradually re-establish full membership for individuals.
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