The Treaty of Lisbon (formerly known as the Reform Treaty) was signed on 13 December 2007 and it marks the next stage in the development of the European Union. Each successive step since the Treaty of Rome has extended the powers of the European Union and improved the Union’s democratic functioning, and the Lisbon treaty is no exception.
Its predecessor, the Constitutional Treaty, drafted by theConvention on the Future of Europe but rejected in two referendums in 2005, was a more far-reaching document;but in its place the Treaty of Lisbon nevertheless representsreal progress towards a more efficient, effective and democratic European Union.
The Laeken Declaration of December 2001 that launched the process of drafting improvements to the institutions observed that “citizens are calling for a clear, open, effective, democratically controlled Community approach, developing a Europe which points the way ahead for the world. An approach that provides concrete results in termsof more jobs, better quality of life, less crime, decent education and better health care. There can be no doubt that this will require Europe to undergo renewal and reform.”
This briefing shows how the Treaty of Lisbon will, when implemented, increase the rights of citizens and the powers of elected parliamentarians within the EU.
Read the whole briefing at 071220 democracy briefing