Constitutional Patriotism as a Form of Citizenship for the EU-Accommodating Minorities

Predrag Zenovic

Supervisors: Sebastiano Maffettone (LUISS) & Matteo Gianni (UNIGE)


The research focuses on minority perspective on European Union (EU) constitutional patriotism within a multilevel governance system (national, supranational-EU, and international) and the quality that this perspective brings to the universality of constitutional patriotism. What are the liberal values that minorities see crucial for their identity, which are entailed in the broad context of EU constitutional norms? The research will focus on the way minorities perceive the EU as a polity, showing the type of loyalty different to one owed to majority-centered national states. This area, as will be demonstrated by the research, represents a vivid source for the further European constitualization and identity formation – crucial aspects for the pure existence of Europe as a post-national polity. The main idea of the paper is to show that minority protection, both as set of legal norms and set of policies brings about a new quality for the identification with the EU as a political form, and feeling devotion towards values that it protects. Multiculturalism, in its different the theoretical and practical aspects did not succeed in bringing a harmonious political connection between minorities and national states. The issues of citizenship, political loyalty and belonging, active participation in democratic processes remains the crucial aspect of contemporary liberal polities. The challenges of integration and social cohesion are the constant of contemporary globalized world. The EU should become a political entity capable of safeguarding minority identities, and accommodating them in the broad field of active political participation. Definitional issues are to be resolved and bear specific significance for the outputs of the research. In the research, all groups and individuals belonging to groups, formed on the cultural, religious, national, sex, sexuality or any other identical reference will be considered as minorities. Terminological apparatus will make clear differences within minorities, defining traditional, national minorities as well as post-national like LGBT, persons with intellectual disabilities, women etc. The possibility (probability) of being a minority within Europe brings a new sphere in the research. Migration to and within the EU is a particular field that needs proper conceptualization and analyzes. The research itself will try to, by this methodological aspect, depart from the nation centered discourse and to focus on a broader majority-minority dilemmas and debates in contemporary multicultural polities. By constitutional patriotism in the EU the author encompasses primary and secondary post-Lisbon EU law and the norms and values that undoubtedly stem from it. The rationale for such methodological approach is the fact that the EU in its law and practice entails additional value for minorities’ rights protection to those accessible on national level, offering the preservation and affirmation of their identity and attracting their loyalty. The EU that would entail high level of minority protection in its legal aspect and minority inclusion in the political one would ensure political stability and the development of active citizenship within its polity. The methodology used in this research, besides auxiliary methods, will be based on three qualitative methods - critical analysis, case study and comparative method.

This project receives funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Grant Agreement No 722826.