Improving democratic governance through institutional design: Civic participation and democratic ownership in Europe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



In this article we provide a conceptual and argumentative framework for studying how institutional design can enhance civic participation and ultimately increase citizens’ sense of democratic ownership of governmental processes. First, we set out the socio-political context for enhancing the democratic governance of regulatory policies in Europe, and highlight the way in which civic participation and democratic ownership is given equal weight to economic competitiveness. We then discuss the potential for institutionalised participatory governance to develop and their prospects for improving effective and democratic governance in the multi-layered European polity. The article concludes by outlining a research agenda for the field and identifying the priorities for scholars working in interaction with civil society and governments.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-91
Number of pages21
JournalRegulation & Governance
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2010


  • participation, Europe, democracy, institution, governance