written by
Kriesi, Hanspeter
Is There a Crisis of Democracy in Europe?
scritto da
Kriesi, Hanspeter


This paper discusses the current prospects of democracy in Europe from four perspectives: the bird’s-eye view of long-term trends; the perspective of citizens’ support of democratic principles and their dissatisfaction with the way democracy works in their own countries; the voters’ perspective, which points to the rise of populist challengers in reaction to rising democratic dissatisfaction; and the elites’ perspective of populists in power. Overall, there is reason for concern, but no reason to dramatize. The long-term trends point to the expansion of democracy; the citizens’ support for democracy is still massive in Europe. At the same time, democratic dissatisfaction is widespread, giving rise to the surge of populist challengers from the left and the right. However, even if they gain power, populists meet with a large number of constraints that stabilize democracy.

To cite this article:

Kriesi, H. Is There a Crisis of Democracy in Europe?. Polit Vierteljahresschr 61, 237–260 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11615-020-00231-9

#crisis of representation #democracy #democratic dissatisfaction #democratic principles #populism
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This project is funded with a Synergy Grant by the European Research Council under Grant Agreement n. 810356. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Council. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.