The Oxford Handbook of Local and Regional Democracy in Europe

Paperback | November 26, 2012

EditorJohn Loughlin, Frank Hendriks, Anders Lidstrom

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The Oxford Handbook of Local and Regional Democracy in Europe analyses the state of play of democracy at the subnational level in the 27 member states of the EU plus Norway and Switzerland. It places subnational democracy in the context of the distinctive Anglo, the French, the German, andScandinavian state traditions in Europe asking to what extent these are still relevant today. The Handbook adapts Lijphart's theory of democracy and applies it to the subnational levels in all the country chapters. A key theoretical issue is whether subnational (regional and local) democracy isderived from national democracy or whether it is legitimate in its own right. Besides these theoretical concerns it focuses on the practice of democracy: the roles of political parties and interest groups and also how subnational political institutions relate to the ordinary citizen. This can takethe form of local referendums or other mechanisms of participation. The Handbook reveals a wide variety of practices across Europe in this regard. Local financial systems also reveal a great variety. Finally, each chapter examines the challenges facing subnational democracy but also the opportunities available to them to enhance their democratic systems. Among the challenges identified are: Europeanization, globalization, but also citizens disaffection and switch-off from politics. Somecountries have confronted these challenges more successfully than others but all countries face them. An important aspect of the Handbook is the inclusion of all the countries of East and Central Europe plus Cyprus and Malta, who joined the EU in 2004 and 2007. This is the first time they have beenexamined alongside the countries of Western Europe from the angle of subnational democracy.

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The Oxford Handbook of Local and Regional Democracy in Europe analyses the state of play of democracy at the subnational level in the 27 member states of the EU plus Norway and Switzerland. It places subnational democracy in the context of the distinctive Anglo, the French, the German, andScandinavian state traditions in Europe asking...

John Loughlin is author and editor of over twenty books and numerous articles and book chapters on European territorial governance. He is an expert of the Council of Europe's Committee of Independent Experts on Regional and Local Democracy and chaired the Advisory Committee of Experts on Effective Decentralization of UN-Habitat. He ha...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:816 pagesPublished:November 26, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199650705

ISBN - 13:9780199650705

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Table of Contents

John Loughlin, Frank Hendriks, and Anders Lidstrom: IntroductionPart I: The British Isles1. Peter John and Colin Copus: The United Kingdom: Is There Really an Anglo Model?2. John Loughlin: Ireland: Halting Steps Towards Local DemocracyPart II: The Rhinelandic States3. Ellen Wayenberg, Filip De Rynck, Kristof Steyvers, Jean-Benoit Pilet: Belgium: a Tale of Regional Divergence?4. Frank Hendriks and Linze Schaap: The Netherlands: Subnational Democracy and the Reinvention of Tradition5. Patrick Dumont, Philippe Poirier, and Raphael Kies: Luxembourg: The Challenge of Inclusive Democracy in a 'Local State'6. Arthur Benz and Christina Zimmer: Germany: Varieties of Democracy in a Federal System7. Franz Fallend: Austria: From Consensus to Competition and Participation?8. Andreas Ladner: Switzerland: Subsidiarity, Power-sharing, and Direct DemocracyPart III: The Nordic States9. Jens Blom-Hansen and Anne Heeager: Denmark: Between Local Democracy and Implementing Agency of the Welfare State10. Stefan Sjoblom: Finland: The Limits of the Unitary Decentralized Model11. Anders Lidstrom: Sweden: Party Dominated Sub-national Democracy under Challenge?12. Harald Baldersheim and Lawrence E. Rose: Norway: The Decline of Subnational Democracy?Part IV: The Southern European States13. Alistair Cole: France: Between Centralization and Fragmentation14. Simona Piattoni and Marco Brunazzo: Italy: The Subnational Dimension to Strengthening Democracy since the 1990s15. Cesar Colino and Eloisa del Pino: Spain: The Consolidation of Strong Regional Governments and the Limits of Local Decentralization16. Jose M. Magone: Portugal: Local Democracy in a Small Centralized Republic17. Nikos Hlepas and Panos Getimis: Greece: A Case of Fragmented Centralism and 'Behind the Scenes' Localism18. Henry Frendo: Malta: Local Government: A Slowly Maturing Process19. Andrekos Varnava and Christalla Yakinthou: Cyprus: Political Modernity and the Structures of Democracy in a Divided IslandPart V: The New DemocraciesThe Visegrad States20. Pawel Swianiewicz: Poland: Europeanization of Sub-National Governments21. Michal Illner: The Czech Republic: Local Government in the Years After the Reform22. Gabor Soos and Laszlo Kakai: Hungary: Remarkable Successes and Costly Failures: An Evaluation of Subnational Democracy23. Sona Capkova: Slovakia: Local Government: Establishing Democracy at the GrassrootsThe Baltic States24. Georg Sootla and Kersten Kattai: Estonia: Challenges and Lessons of the Development of Local Autonomy25. Inga Vilka: Latvia: Experiments and Reforms in Decentralization26. Jolanta Vaiciuniene and Saulius Nefas: Lithuania: Brave Enough to Implement Daring Democratic Reforms?The Balkan States27. Stanka Setnikar-Canka: Slovenia in Transition: Decentralization as a Goal28. Pavlina Nikolova: Bulgaria: The Dawn of a New Era of Inclusive Subnational Democracy?29. Ana Maria Dobre: Romania: From Historical Regions to Local Decentralization via the Unitary StatePart VI: Conclusions30. Frank Hendriks, John Loughlin, and Anders Lidstrom: European Subnational Democracy: Comparative Reflections and ConclusionsAppendix 1 Structure of Sub-National Governments in Europe (2007)Appendix 2 Sub-national Finances in EuropeAppendix 3 Trust, Importance of Local/Regional Government, and Levels of Corruption in EuropeIndex