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Referendums put citizens back at the centre of the political stage. As instruments of direct democracy, they may foster citizens' involvement and legitimise important decisions. Referendums have been on the rise in Europe and elsewhere in the world in recent decades, and have become a recurrent feature of European politics. Despite the increased interest in some Member States, however, referendums remain controversial. On the one hand, advocates of direct democracy stress that referendums can foster ...

This publication provides an overview of the work carried out by the European Commission at the mid-term of its mandate under Jean-Claude Juncker's presidency, and more specifically an update of the initiatives taken in the framework of the ten priority areas for action. The in-depth analysis draws on a wide range of EPRS publications, and updates a previous edition The Juncker Commission's ten priorities: state of play at the start of 2017, published in January 2017. It has been compiled and edited ...

Created with the objective of promoting democracy and good governance, the African Union has succeeded in creating a robust normative framework and a consistent policy for dealing with coups d’état, which have affected many African countries since their independence. However, the implementation of this policy has not been without difficulties, since there is a need to further improve the efficacy and consistency of the AU’s decisions and hone its normative tools for the handling of more complex cases ...