Humboldt University, Berlin, 30 – 31 March 2012
Since the 1990s and in direct connection with the low turnouts of the European elections the so-called “democratic deficit” of the EU became an increasingly discussed topic in both academic and political circles. In this context, the (apparently insufficient) communication of European politics to its citizens and the lack of identification with European institutions have been of especially great importance. Academic research has invested considerable efforts in trying to analyse and explain these problematic relationships. However, because this still growing area of research is still dominated by social scientists, historical approaches seem to be somewhat underrepresented. The Eighth HEIRS conference thus aimed to foster interdisciplinary exchange in historical research on this crucial aspect of the history of European integration.