This book explores how the right to the free movement of goods, persons, services and capital in the European Union legal order affects welfare states. These "four freedoms", as they are known, are vital instruments for the protection of a European market unencumbered by internal frontiers. The European Constitution, Welfare States and Democracy explore the relationships and conflicts that have emerged between the European constitution and the legal regulation of mixed economies and markets within welfare-states. In particular, it examines the threat posed to the discretionary powers enjoyed by national governments and administrative authorities.
Christoffer C. Eriksen has undertaken a comprehensive analysis of a series of judgments in which the European Court of Justice has clearly indicated the ways in which the four freedoms may be incompatible with the current practice of entrusting national administrative authorities with discretionary powers and thus highlights how the four freedoms are provoking democratic dilemmas, previously neglected in the academic literature. The book is written in a style which communicates beyond an audience of specialized legal scholars and although it includes analysis of black letter law, its methodology also draws from the disciplines of philosophy, political science, and sociology.
1. Introduction 2. Democracy, National Administration and the European Constitution 3. Administrative Discretion - A Restriction to Free Movement 4. The European Constitution, Democracy and Administrative Discretion 5. Administrative Discretion and Democracy - A Nordic Perspective 6. Balancing Rule of Law and National Administrative Discretion - A Dilema for a European Democracy 7. The European Constitution, Welfare States and Democracy