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The European Public Space - Assembling Information that Allows the Monitoring of European Democracy, The EUROPUB Project, Inception Report



EUROPUB is a 36-month project supported by the Key Action �Improving the Socio-Economic Knowledge Base� of the Fifth Framework Programme. It was launched in 2001 and is scheduled to be completed in 2004.
The project will analyse to what extent current institutional constellations and socio-political practices at the European level provide an effective system of political contestation.
At the conceptual level, the project will provide a functioning concept of a European public space that is in line with both the institutional policy realities of the EU and the state-of-the-art thinking in this area. Here the project consortium aims to synthesise and bridge the gap between much of the theoretical and empirical work in the field. This concept will provide a yardstick for measuring the development of the European public space as well as a point of departure for public debate about European democracy.
At the substantive level, EUROPUB will provide an in-depth analysis of the institutional opportunity structures for contesting policy-making at the European level in selected policy areas, in light of the modes of organisation of political activity in general. This analysis will provide an insight into the existing system of political contestation at European level and point to reform paths for enhancing and strengthening European democracy. In relation to this, the project will analyse the emergence of a specifically European political class.

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