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How effective and legitimate is the European semester? Increasing role of the European parliament

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  • Benedicta Marzinotto
  • Guntram B. Wolff
  • Mark Hallerberg

Abstract

The European Semester is a new institutional process that provides EU member states with ex-ante guidance on fiscal and structural objectives. The Semester’s goals are ambitious and it is still uncertain how it will fit into the new EU economic governance framework. We find that member states are only slowly internalising the new procedure. Furthermore, the Semester has so far lacked legitimacy due to the minor role assigned to the European Parliament, the marginal involvement of national parliaments and the lack of transparency of the process at some stages. Finally, there remains room to clarify the implications from a unified legal text. In fact, diluting the legal separation of recommendations on National Reform Programmes and Council opinions on Stability and Convergence Programmes may compromise effective surveillance and governance. The European Parliament has an important role to play. It needs hold the Commission and the Council accountable. This and the overall objective of enhancing the new procedure’s effectiveness and legitimacy can be done by means of a regular Economic Dialogue on the Semester.

Suggested Citation

  • Benedicta Marzinotto & Guntram B. Wolff & Mark Hallerberg, 2011. "How effective and legitimate is the European semester? Increasing role of the European parliament," Working Papers 612, Bruegel.
  • Handle: RePEc:bre:wpaper:612
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    1. Hallerberg, Mark & Yläoutinen, Sami, 2010. "Political Power, Fiscal Institutions and Budgetary Outcomes in Central and Eastern Europe," Journal of Public Policy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 30(01), pages 45-62, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Cristina Fasone, 2012. "The Struggle of the European Parliament to Participate in the New Economic Governance," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 45, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
    2. Zsolt Darvas, 2012. "The euro crisis: ten roots, but fewer solutions," Policy Contributions 755, Bruegel.
    3. Zsolt Darvas & Jean Pisani-Ferry, 2011. "Europe's growth emergency," Policy Contributions 623, Bruegel.
    4. Ben Crum, 2013. "Saving the Euro at the Cost of Democracy?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(4), pages 614-630, July.
    5. Maatsch, Aleksandra, 2017. "Effectiveness of the European semester: Explaining domestic consent and contestation," MPIfG Discussion Paper 17/6, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.

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