Spotlight on Bosnia

Football, politics and society

From corruption in Italy to racism in Poland, football is the second theme of our Joining the dots series.

Gem from our archive

A selection of our best articles on Europe.

EU 2.0? Towards sustainable integration

Kalypso Nicolaïdis


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After the financial crash that wrecked the island's economy in 2008, Icelanders took to the streets with pots and pans to demand a new political and economic order. Their wish was granted in the form of a new, 'crowdsourced' constitution, drafted by a Constitutional Council whose members were ordinary citizens. In October 2012, Icelanders accepted the draft in a landslide referendum.

What can we - and the European Union! - learn from the Icelandic constitutional experiment?

A selection of our best articles on the theme of post-2008 Iceland.

Democracy on ice: a post-mortem of the Icelandic constitution

In spite of clear popular support, Iceland's new crowd-sourced constitution was recently killed by politicians. An ex-member of the constitutional council sheds some light on what happened - and why there might still be some hope for this unique experiment.

Real democracy still missing

Those of us who were actively working for a sustainable and democratic society in Iceland have always wondered when the window of opportunity opened by the 'pots and pans revolution' would close. Did the last elections bring an end to Iceland's radically democratic moment?

When politics strike back: the end of the Icelandic constitutional experiment?

A wave of enthusiasm took Icelanders through the 2012 referendum after the 2008 crash, once the widely-praised 'crowd-sourced' constitution appeared to be within reach. But Icelanders’ hopes seem to be evaporating in the haze of this week-end's parliamentary elections.

From the people to the people, a new constitution

What the future holds in store and what will be the fate of the bill for a new constitution is hard to say at this point in time. But what is evident is that the battle of “who owns Iceland” is being fought and is at its high water mark. There is much at stake.

Real democracy in Iceland?

After the crash that destroyed Iceland's economy, Icelanders started to take an interest in new forms of political and economic governance. So - what can we learn from the country's experiments?

Iceland: direct democracy in action

The Icelandic experiment raises many intriguing questions: how do citizens of a country get called to this office? How do they draft a new constitution? What sort of political forces do they have to balance? An insider view from a former member of the Constitutional Council.

The Icelandic constitutional experiment

This Saturday, a year after a Constitutional Council has written a draft constitution with the help of citizens, voters agreed this draft should be the basis for a new constitution. This writing experiment stands out for its surprisingly democratic process, but a closer look reveals some of its limitations.

Hope from below: composing the commons in Iceland

Never again can the world be told by the custodians of the old that the people cannot be relied upon to write the contract between citizens and government, and write it well.

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