Thorsten Hüller, Beate Kohler-Koch
Analysing the Democratic Credentials of the 'Accountability Web' in European Multilevel Governance: The Potential Role of Civil Society Organisations


Working mechanisms of accountability are an essential part for the functioning of modern democracies. More often than not accountability is reduced to electoral accountability, but many claim that this mechanism is not properly working in the EU and other ways of achieving accountability should be looked at more closely. Civil society organizations are expected to bind the decision-making elite either directly to citizens and specific constituencies or to introduce surrogate mechanisms for such direct binding. In the paper, we first turn to the theoretical question of linking accountability to democracy and then look at the potential roles of civil society organisations in fostering European accountability.