When Culture Hampers European Integration: The Case of Denmark’s EU Cooperation

Jeppe Juul Petersen

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    This article deals with Denmark’s skeptical attitude towards the EU cooperation. From a hermeneutical-institutional approach the aim of this article is to analyze why Denmark has been rejecting several initiatives from the EU. It illustrates how different democratic understandings hamper European integration. Based on Ronald Dworkin’s theoretical framework the article discusses two different perceptions on democracy: majoritarian democracy and constitutional democracy. It is shown when and why EU’s member states prefer to handle EU-related judicial disputes without involving supranational institutions. In addition, the article provides tentative comparisons to Britain and the Nordic countries since they show similar attitudes to supranational institutions. The article concludes that Denmark’s majoritarian democracy provides political cultures incompatible with the EU’s constitutional democracy and this can explain why Denmark is so reserved when it comes to EU cooperation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 3rd International Conference on European Integration. ICEI 2016
    EditorsEva Kovářová, Lukáš Melecký, Michaela Staníčková
    Place of PublicationOstrava
    PublisherVSB- Technical University of Ostrava, Faculty of Economics
    Publication date2016
    ISBN (Electronic)9788024839110
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    EventThe 3rd International Conference on European Integration. ICEI 2016 - Ostrava, Czech Republic
    Duration: 19 May 201620 May 2016
    Conference number: 3


    ConferenceThe 3rd International Conference on European Integration. ICEI 2016
    Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
    Internet address


    • Culture
    • European integration
    • Institutions
    • Majoritarian- and constitutional democracy

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