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World Diplomacy of the European Parliament

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This article examines the role of the European Parliament in ensuring democratic participation in European Union external relations and global governance. Although the Lisbon Treaty has reinforced the European Parliament’s foreign affairs prerogatives, many obstacles hinder its influence. This prompts the European Parliament to invest considerable institutional resources not only to counterbalance the Commission and the Council and reduce information asymmetry, but also to enhance its posture on the world stage through value-oriented and region-oriented parliamentary diplomacy. The article argues that by conducting world diplomacy, the European Parliament generates critical mass for its institutional empowerment by a crafty application of its treaty rights, by means of non-legislative instruments, and by establishing bilateral and multilateral diplomatic contacts with parliamentary and executive bodies worldwide. The European Parliament thereby attempts to portray itself as an actor without which decisions cannot be made.

Affiliations: 1: T.M.C. Asser Institute 2517 jn The HagueThe Netherlands


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