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Executive Power of the European UnionLaw, Practices, and the Living Constitution$
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Deirdre Curtin

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199264087

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199264087.001.0001

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Making Visible the Invisible

Making Visible the Invisible

(p.277) 10 Making Visible the Invisible
Executive Power of the European Union

Deirdre Curtin

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks to the overall ecology of EU executive power and its relationship with its surrounding environment. The perspective adopted is, in the final analysis, one of the compound or composite nature of this power, in the sense not only of a shared and plural executive at the EU level but also of very often the same actors performing different roles and tasks at different governance levels without this being very clearly visible or generally understood. This fact, or perspective, is then further considered in the light of a number of the so-called ‘meta-principles’ of the overall political order (such as the principles of legitimacy and of democracy) as well as the arguably lower-level ‘organizing principle’ (at least in procedural terms) of accountability as quite succinctly and precisely defined and applied. The chapter encapsulates the broader narrative of this book, that is, to further contribute and analyze the process of making the invisible visible across the wide spectrum of executive power in the EU political system as a whole.

Keywords:   European Union, executive powers, EU political system, accountability, meta-principles

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