Germany vs Europe: Democracy and the Struggle for European Integration

CECS is hosting a series of international lectures on Global Constitutional Struggles this autumn. 

Abstract: Germany vs. Europe: The Principle of Democracy in German Constitutional Law and the Struggle for European Integration.

As the Euro-crisis grinds on, the German Federal Constitutional Court has repeatedly intervened to review and qualify Germany’s essential participation in bail-out measures.  The Court has sought to ensure that involvement in Europe’s ever-deeper economic and political integration does not compromise Germany's domestic constitutional commitment to democracy.  The principle of democracy (Demokratieprinzip) is part of Germany’s unalterable constitutional identity and it has emerged as the main limitation on Germany¹s participation in and contribution to the European Union.  On the basis of the German Constitutional Court’s European jurisprudence, this paper characterizes the principle of democracy as a valorization of fully-informed, rational, parliamentary governance exercised on behalf of the electorate by a plurality of widely representative political parties in open debate over public policy.  This is a vision of democracy suited to national political systems and cultures and only poorly aligned with the reality of Europe’s supranational political institutions and framework.

Professor Russell A. Miller joined the Washington and Lee law faculty in 2008. His teaching and scholarly research focuses on comparative law theory and methods, comparative constitutional law, German law and legal culture, and public international law.  Previously, he taught at the University of Idaho College of Law and has been a guest professor in Germany.

Refreshments will be served after the lecture.

Read more about Russell A. Miller

Time: Monday, 11 November 2013, 15:30-17:00

Place: The staff canteen 02-3-44, Studiegaarden, Studiestraede 6, 3rd floor, DK-1455 Copenhagen K

Everyone is welcome. Please use this registration form. No later than 8 November 12:00.

For inquiries about the registration please mail to Maria Lotz at