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SPP 472

Author: Richard Rose and Patrick Bernhagen
Description: Although the European Union is formally committed to the equal representation of its citizens, the Lisbon Treaty commits the European Parliament to allocating seats to member-states by a formula of degressive proportionality that rejects the principle of one person, one vote, one value. The first object here is to evaluate the extent of inequality in representation according to the national residence of EP voters. Secondly, it explains the institutionalization and evolution of institutionalized inequality as a result of path dependence. The third section tests the consequences of degressive proportionality for the number of MEPs of each European Parliament party group and for the allocation of EU funds. Since path-dependent constraints are now under pressure to adapt, the concluding section compares the effect that different alternatives for reform representation would have on inequality in representing European voters and their potential for mobilizing resistance because of deviations from Pareto optimality.

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Postal Address:    CSPP Publications, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, G1 1XQ, UK

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CSPP School of Government & Public Policy U. of Strathclyde Glasgow G1 1XQ Scotland