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The European Parliament, 8th Edition

by Richard Corbett, Francis Jacobs and Michael Shackleton
£25 / €30 Buy Now
ISBN: 978-0-9654508-5-2 Published: 7 June 2011


“No one can seek to understand the functioning of the European Union without understanding its Parliament. This book — now in its eighth edition — is recognised in academia and among practitioners as the authoritative guide to the European Parliament.”
Herman Van Rompuy, former President of the European Council

For nearly 25 years this has been the premier textbook on the European Parliament, covering every aspect of how it is elected, organised and does it work. The current edition is the 8th published.

“The book provides an invaluable guide to the institution’s history, power and politics… For academics and practitioners alike, Corbett, Jacobs and Shackleton offer a superb starting-point for any serious understanding of the world’s only elected transnational parliament.”
Jerzy Buzek, as President of the European Parliament

Table of Contents

Individual chapters cover the following topics:

  1. The Parliament in context
  2. How it is elected
  3. Where, when and in quale lingua
  4. The individual members
  5. The political groups
  6. Leadership structures
  7. The Parliamentary committees
  8. Interparliamentary delegations
  9. Plenary
  10. Intergroups
  11. The Parliament secretariat
  12. The Parliament and legislation
  13. The budgetary role
  14. Appointment and dismissal
  15. Scrutiny and control of the executive
  16. A political forum and a channel for communication
  17. The EP and National Parliaments
  18. Parliament and constitutional change

Plus elections results since 1979, bibliography and full index.

450 pages.


Photo of Richard Corbett, Francis Jacobs and Michael Shackleton
Richard Corbett, Francis Jacobs and Michael Shackleton

The same three authors have co-written all eight editions of this book…

Richard Corbett is a British Labour MEP, re-elected in 2014 having previously been an MEP from 1996 to 2009. Prior his re-election he was the advisor on constitutional questions to the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy. As an MEP he has variously served as spokesperson on constitutional affairs and EU reform for the Socialist Group and rapporteur on the European Constitution and the treaty of Lisbon, as well as on several revisions of Parliament’s Rules of Procedure.

Francis Jacobs is Head of the European Parliament’s Information Office in Dublin. Before that he had worked as an official for several of the Parliament’s committees, most recently as the Head of Unit responsible for the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Consumer Protection.

Michael Shackleton was formerly Head of the European Parliament Information Office in the United Kingdom. Before this he had most recently been responsible for the setting up of europarltv, the Parliament’s webTV channel, launched in September 2008, and prior to that been the Head of Unit responsible for conciliations and codecision.