Petra Ahrens Cherry Miller


The condition of EU democracy is hotly debated and European Parliament’s political groups and Europarties play an important role in continuing power struggles between European Union institutions. To harness the increased power of both the European Parliament and European citizens, the formal and informal relationships between the political groups and Europarties matter, with the Spitzenkandidatur process as a crucial aspect. Using a dataset of 135 semi-structured interviews, this article looks beneath the formal rules that structure European Parliament’s political groups and Europarties. Exploring how MEPs construct these relationships, it discusses leadership, institutionalisation and stances toward European integration as core elements of the relationship between Europarties and political groups in the European Parliament.


Article Keywords

European Parliament, Europarties, Political groups, Institutionalization, Informal politics

Research Articles
Article Copyright
Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Material published in the JCER is done so under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence, with copyright remaining with the author.
  • Articles published online in the JCER cannot be published in another journal without explicit approval of the JCER editor.
  • Authors can 'self-archive' their articles in digital form on their personal homepages, funder repositories or their institutions' archives provided that they link back to the original source on the JCER website. Authors can archive pre-print, post-print or the publisher's version of their work.
  • Authors agree that submitted articles to the JCER will be submitted to various abstracting, indexing and archiving services as selected by the JCER.
Further information about archiving and copyright are contained within the JCER Open Access Policy.