Academic Publications






This homepage presents my work as a political scientist based at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

My work focuses on the application of classical insights and conceptions from political theory to contemporary political challenges. In particular, I examine how the internationalization of politics, and European integration in particular, challenges established political theoretical insights.

Thus, key themes in my research are the rise and fall of the Constitutional Treaty for the European Union, the EU democratic deficit, inter-parliamentary coordination in international affairs and transnational social justice.

I publish on these issues in academic articles as well as in policy reports and commentary pieces.

Earlier I worked at the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) in Brussels, the University of Twente and Research voor Beleid in Leiden, a firm for policy-oriented research and consultancy.

Ben Crum


Department of Political Science

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam


De Boelelaan 1081

1081 HV  Amsterdam

The Netherlands


Tel +31 20 5986821

Fax +31 20 5986821



NOW IN PAPERBACK: Practices of Inter-Parliamentary Coordination in International Politics. The European Union and Beyond

This volume, edited by John Erik Fossum (ARENA/ U.Oslo) and me, provides a thorough empirical examination of how an internationalising context drives parliamentarians to engage in inter-parliamentary coordination and how it affects their power positions vis-à-vis executive actors, among themselves, and in society in general. Building upon these empirical insights, the book assesses whether parliamentary democracy can remain sustainable under these changing conditions. Indeed, if parliaments are, and remain, central to our understanding of modern democracy, it is of crucial importance to track their responses to internationalisation, the fragmentation of political sovereignty, and the proliferation of multilevel politics.




In 2012, my book Learning from the EU Constitutional Treaty came out with Routledge.

This research monograph provides a comprehensive analysis of the making of the Constitutional Treaty and the subsequent Treaty of Lisbon. It uses this analysis to develop an original political theory of democratic constitutionalization beyond the nation-state, which maintains that international organizations can be put on democratic foundations, but only by properly engaging national political structures.

For a summary of the main argument, see my post for The EUDO Café.



succeeds in blending normative and empirical insights in a manner that will make it an indispensable reference on the EU's constitutional debates of the past decade – and a worthwhile point of departure for those (inevitably) yet to come.

Robert Harmsen in the Journal of Common Market Studies


provides a good reconstruction of the EU’s journey towards increased legitimacy and makes a highly original contribution to the normative debate on the post-governmental legitimacy of the EU.

Diana Panke in West European Politics


Recent Academic Publications


‘A Multi-Layered Social Europe? Three Emerging Transnational Social Duties in the EU’, in A. Crespy & G. Menz (eds.) (2015), Social Policy and the Eurocrisis. Quo Vadis Social Europe (pp. 161-181). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.


with Deirdre Curtin (2015). ‘The Challenge of Making European Union Executive Power Accountable’. In S. Piattoni (Ed.), The European Union: Democratic Principles and Institutional Architectures in Times of Crisis (pp. 63-87). Oxford: Oxford University Press.


‘Saving the Euro at the Cost of Democracy?’, in Journal of Common Market Studies (2013), Vol. 51(4): 614-630.

More Academic Publications ...

Recent Commentaries and Reviews


‘Verwacht niet te veel van het Nederlands EU-voorzitterschap’, in Reformatorisch Dagblad, 8 January 2016, pp. 6-7.


‘Volksvertegenwoordigers uit de cockpit’, Internationale Spectator 69(8).


Regionale onafhankelijkheid in Europa. Idee, 35(5), 38-41.


Omgaan met een sub-optimale unie. De inzichten en frustraties van Fritz Scharpf. Beleid en Maatschappij, 41(3), 247-253.

More Commentaries ...


EU Parliamentarism as a “Multilevel Parliamentary Field”, presentation at the PADEMIA-Workshop on ‘Multilevel Democracy’, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam/ACCESS EUROPE, 30 and 31 October 2014.

‘The Democratic Dilemma of Monetary Union’, presentation at the 2012 EUDO Dissemination Conference ‘The Euro Crisis and the State of European Democracy’, European University Institute, Florence, 22 and 23 November 2012.

[Accompanying slides]



Wat zegt de deal met Griekenland over de staat van de EU?

BNR Nieuwsradio, 14/7/2015: 10u34

Stand.nl: Europa is te streng voor de Grieken

NPO Radio 1, 13/7/2015: 11u21

Stand.nl: Het is belangrijk dat de Britten in de EU blijven

NPO Radio 1, 8/5/2015: 11u21

Griekse hervormingsplannen voor verlenging Europese leningen

NPO Radio 1, 24/2/2015: 8u10

Europese onderhandelingen over nieuwe lening voor Griekenland

NPO Radio 1, 19/2/2015: 17u45

Topbenoemingen Europese Unie: Tusk en Mogherini

NPO Radio 1, 30/9/2014: 8u10

[In Dutch] On the British threat to hold a referendum on EU membership conditions, BNR Nieuwsradio 10 July 2012.