EU-level parliamentarism is at a crossroads. The hybrid form of parliamentarism, combining elements of parliamentarism as control of the executive and parliamentarism as a separation of powers, has rendered the public image of the European Parliament obscure, and decreased the democratic legitimacy of the EU’s political system. Even the contradictory elements of the two main models of parliamentarism have been incorporated into the Union’s political governance.

Lack of clarity concerning the contours of parliamentarism tends to support an underestimation of the role it plays at the EU level. The path towards the revision of the Union’s democratic governance along the lines of the separation of powers system is currently shorter than the one provided by parliamentarism as control of the executive.

Teija Tiilikainen
Director; Editor in chief, Ulkopolitiikka (Finnish Journal of Foreign Affairs)