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What is Federalism?
Key Characteristics
Cagayan de Oro, 08 Oct. 2018, Hanns
Seidel Foundation
Prof. Dr Andreas Heinemann-Grüder
University of Bonn / Germany
1
Federalism: Institutional
characteristics
 Shared Rule and Divided Rule
 Three independent branches of government
(executive, legislative, judicative) on unit level
 Units have own constitutions
 Representation and participation of units in the
centre: equal or unequal representation of units
 Certain ethnic groups may enjoy specific
representational rights (reserved seats, quota) or
veto powers over issues pertaining to their
“identity”
 Federal Party System
2
Federal Values
• Recognition of and respect for diversity
• Solidarity
• Non-centralization
• Residual Powers rest with units
• Cooperation and competition
• Subsidiarity
• Equality of the units vis-à-vis the federal centre
• Protection of federal principles through national
and unit constitutions / Const. Courts
3
• Freedom of choice: Individual or groups are given
maximum scope to solve problems
• Systemic failure largely avoided (lowest possible level in
charge, only one level of govt. may crash, but no all levels
together)
• “Free riding” is avoided” (responsible behavior)
Critique:
• Subsidiarity may preserve illiberal orders (liberty problem)
• Subsidiarity may work against economies of scale
• Subsidiarity may inhibit application of national standards
(for example, health, environment, labor)
Subsidiarity
4
Federalism as Self-rule
• Whenever able, exercise all necessary functions
of govt. w/o intervention by the other authority
• Select or elect your own leaders
• Legislative powers in your jurisdiction
• Power to enforce laws or to discipline one’s
own citizens
• Control parties, factions & groups that seek to
break away
• Codes of ethical behavior within one’s own unit
or group
• Resolve internal conflicts, grievances or
malpractices without external interference
5
Shared Rule
(1)Cooperation with regard to competencies / joint
decision-making and / or decentralization
(2)Financial Cooperation
(3)Co-decision-making in Second Chamber
(4)Cooperation of ministries: Executive federalism
(5)Supreme or Constitutional Court
(6)(Re-)Drawing of boundaries of regions (no
unilateralism)
(7)Central govt. confined to framework legislation
(8)Coalition-building together with representatives from
the regional parties & units of the federation
(9)Incorporation of ethnic or regional leaders
6
Ten „Yardsticks“ of Federalism
1) National sovereignty in external affairs
2) Immunity against secession
3) Exercize of federal powers independent
of individual approval by units
4) Unit participation in constitutional
amendments
5) Protection of unit identity
7
Yardsticks of Federalism
6) (Equal) Representation of unequal
units
7) Two independent judicial branches
8) Norm control through federal Supreme
or Constitutional Court
9) Residual powers with the units
10)Transparent division of competencies
(exclusive, joint, or concurrent)
8
Variations in Federalism
• Ethnic and / or territorial federalism
• Degree of asymmetry
• Parliamentary or presidential federalism
• Majoriatarian or proportional electoral laws or
combination of both
• Nation-wide civil service or divided civil service
• Nation-wide police or divided
• National property of natural resources or
divided or exclusive property of units
• Education: national or unit responsibility
9
• Who is the demos, the bearer of sovereignty
(majority, single ethnic groups, multiple ethnic
groups, smaller ethnic groups, immigrants
too?)
• „Dictatorship“ of one group over the other (or
others)
• Citizenship rights not universal
• Fear to loose control over ones own ethnic
group
Why are ethnic conflicts so divisive?
10
• Land rights
• Safeguards against immigration
• Finances and wealth sharing
• Economic autonomy
• State language
• Appointments
• Underrepresentation in parliaments &
executives
• Human rights violations
Frequent demands by minority groups
11
Politics of recognition
mentioning of all people in Constitution
coverage of different historical narratives
in school books
celebration of various holidays
museums, public monuments, street names
>> reflective of diversity
promotion of different state languages
moral parity of nationalities
Federal Conflict Regulation
12
•Flexible application of joint or
concurrent powers
•Multiple speeds of granting
autonomy
•Status hierarchies among federal
units
•Variety of govt. systems in states
Flexibility
13
• Types of government: Directly elected
president / chief minister or elected by
parliament
• Type of Cabinet: Collegial or decision-
making competence by Chief Minister
• State / region constitutions: Confirmation of
identity, for example one or several state
languages
• Unicameral or bicameral system on state
level, variations in size of parliament
Varieties of regional political regimes
14
• Direct democracy (referenda), social rights
• Ethnic quotas for minorities in state / region
parliaments
• State / region-based citizenship regulations
(Switzerland, former Soviet Union)
• Type of local self-government: competencies,
resources, obligations, oversight
• Variations in size, number and type of districts,
for example Autonomous (ethnic) Districts inside
states / regions
• Policy goals: School types, legal status of
churches, public welfare obligations of
enterprises, protection of agricultural land, social
care, labor rights…
Varieties of regional regimes (cont.)
15
• Types of Party Systems: Dominant national party
(Russia, India under Congress), two major national
parties (Australia), three major national parties
(Canada), two major plus two minor national parties
(Germany).
• Region / State Party System: Similar to national
party system, added by regional parties, or dominated
by one or several regional parties
• Majoritarianism: May lead to rainbow coalitions
• Proportional representation: Representation of
smaller parties, crisscrossing of cleavages due to
coalition-building
Federal party system
16
• Party system should avoid two extremes:
centralism and party fragmentation
• Party system should stimulate politicians to
join ranks with national parties and to
incorporate regional / local interests
• Encourage that minority votes are needed for
winning elections (vote pooling)
• Electoral districting & minimal electoral
quorums
• National parties should be federal in character
Federal party system
17
Principles of federal representation
Country Election Representation
USA Direct (general elections) Regional voters & party
politics
Germany Regional governments ex
officio members
Regional govts. & party
politics
Canada Appointed members (by
Governor General on advice of
the Prime Minister)
Regional party politics
Ethiopia Indirect (by regional states) Ethnicity
Austria Indirect (regional parliaments) Party politics
India Indirect (regional parliaments)
and appointments
Party politics
Belgium Indirect (regional parliaments)
and co-opted members
(according to result of national
election)
Party politics
18
Functions of Second Chambers
 Exercise of joint competencies
 Constitutional amendments
 Legislative review
 State of emergency or declaration of war
 Co-appointment of judges of the Const. Court
 Aggregation / representation of region / state
interests & bargaining
 Additional power of parties if majorities in first and
second chamber do not coincide
 Conciliation with first chamber (which can often
override second chamber with qualified majority)
19
• Legislative powers : Electoral law, police, education,
universities, forests, agriculture, fisheries, health, irrigation,
sports, museums & archaeology, urban development , regional
/ local taxes & revenue; tourism; transport; local authorities;
markets; welfare of “tribes”; penal law (U.S.A)
Protection of land and property rights
Languages of instruction: Only with approval of region / state
govt.
Selection of & control over officers and staff working in unit
administration
State / regional govt. decides upon investment & provides
grants for development works
Executive branch: Election, size & principles of representation
of minorities
Frequent Competencies of Units
20

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WhatisFederalism? Key Characteristics.

  • 1. What is Federalism? Key Characteristics Cagayan de Oro, 08 Oct. 2018, Hanns Seidel Foundation Prof. Dr Andreas Heinemann-Grüder University of Bonn / Germany 1
  • 2. Federalism: Institutional characteristics  Shared Rule and Divided Rule  Three independent branches of government (executive, legislative, judicative) on unit level  Units have own constitutions  Representation and participation of units in the centre: equal or unequal representation of units  Certain ethnic groups may enjoy specific representational rights (reserved seats, quota) or veto powers over issues pertaining to their “identity”  Federal Party System 2
  • 3. Federal Values • Recognition of and respect for diversity • Solidarity • Non-centralization • Residual Powers rest with units • Cooperation and competition • Subsidiarity • Equality of the units vis-à-vis the federal centre • Protection of federal principles through national and unit constitutions / Const. Courts 3
  • 4. • Freedom of choice: Individual or groups are given maximum scope to solve problems • Systemic failure largely avoided (lowest possible level in charge, only one level of govt. may crash, but no all levels together) • “Free riding” is avoided” (responsible behavior) Critique: • Subsidiarity may preserve illiberal orders (liberty problem) • Subsidiarity may work against economies of scale • Subsidiarity may inhibit application of national standards (for example, health, environment, labor) Subsidiarity 4
  • 5. Federalism as Self-rule • Whenever able, exercise all necessary functions of govt. w/o intervention by the other authority • Select or elect your own leaders • Legislative powers in your jurisdiction • Power to enforce laws or to discipline one’s own citizens • Control parties, factions & groups that seek to break away • Codes of ethical behavior within one’s own unit or group • Resolve internal conflicts, grievances or malpractices without external interference 5
  • 6. Shared Rule (1)Cooperation with regard to competencies / joint decision-making and / or decentralization (2)Financial Cooperation (3)Co-decision-making in Second Chamber (4)Cooperation of ministries: Executive federalism (5)Supreme or Constitutional Court (6)(Re-)Drawing of boundaries of regions (no unilateralism) (7)Central govt. confined to framework legislation (8)Coalition-building together with representatives from the regional parties & units of the federation (9)Incorporation of ethnic or regional leaders 6
  • 7. Ten „Yardsticks“ of Federalism 1) National sovereignty in external affairs 2) Immunity against secession 3) Exercize of federal powers independent of individual approval by units 4) Unit participation in constitutional amendments 5) Protection of unit identity 7
  • 8. Yardsticks of Federalism 6) (Equal) Representation of unequal units 7) Two independent judicial branches 8) Norm control through federal Supreme or Constitutional Court 9) Residual powers with the units 10)Transparent division of competencies (exclusive, joint, or concurrent) 8
  • 9. Variations in Federalism • Ethnic and / or territorial federalism • Degree of asymmetry • Parliamentary or presidential federalism • Majoriatarian or proportional electoral laws or combination of both • Nation-wide civil service or divided civil service • Nation-wide police or divided • National property of natural resources or divided or exclusive property of units • Education: national or unit responsibility 9
  • 10. • Who is the demos, the bearer of sovereignty (majority, single ethnic groups, multiple ethnic groups, smaller ethnic groups, immigrants too?) • „Dictatorship“ of one group over the other (or others) • Citizenship rights not universal • Fear to loose control over ones own ethnic group Why are ethnic conflicts so divisive? 10
  • 11. • Land rights • Safeguards against immigration • Finances and wealth sharing • Economic autonomy • State language • Appointments • Underrepresentation in parliaments & executives • Human rights violations Frequent demands by minority groups 11
  • 12. Politics of recognition mentioning of all people in Constitution coverage of different historical narratives in school books celebration of various holidays museums, public monuments, street names >> reflective of diversity promotion of different state languages moral parity of nationalities Federal Conflict Regulation 12
  • 13. •Flexible application of joint or concurrent powers •Multiple speeds of granting autonomy •Status hierarchies among federal units •Variety of govt. systems in states Flexibility 13
  • 14. • Types of government: Directly elected president / chief minister or elected by parliament • Type of Cabinet: Collegial or decision- making competence by Chief Minister • State / region constitutions: Confirmation of identity, for example one or several state languages • Unicameral or bicameral system on state level, variations in size of parliament Varieties of regional political regimes 14
  • 15. • Direct democracy (referenda), social rights • Ethnic quotas for minorities in state / region parliaments • State / region-based citizenship regulations (Switzerland, former Soviet Union) • Type of local self-government: competencies, resources, obligations, oversight • Variations in size, number and type of districts, for example Autonomous (ethnic) Districts inside states / regions • Policy goals: School types, legal status of churches, public welfare obligations of enterprises, protection of agricultural land, social care, labor rights… Varieties of regional regimes (cont.) 15
  • 16. • Types of Party Systems: Dominant national party (Russia, India under Congress), two major national parties (Australia), three major national parties (Canada), two major plus two minor national parties (Germany). • Region / State Party System: Similar to national party system, added by regional parties, or dominated by one or several regional parties • Majoritarianism: May lead to rainbow coalitions • Proportional representation: Representation of smaller parties, crisscrossing of cleavages due to coalition-building Federal party system 16
  • 17. • Party system should avoid two extremes: centralism and party fragmentation • Party system should stimulate politicians to join ranks with national parties and to incorporate regional / local interests • Encourage that minority votes are needed for winning elections (vote pooling) • Electoral districting & minimal electoral quorums • National parties should be federal in character Federal party system 17
  • 18. Principles of federal representation Country Election Representation USA Direct (general elections) Regional voters & party politics Germany Regional governments ex officio members Regional govts. & party politics Canada Appointed members (by Governor General on advice of the Prime Minister) Regional party politics Ethiopia Indirect (by regional states) Ethnicity Austria Indirect (regional parliaments) Party politics India Indirect (regional parliaments) and appointments Party politics Belgium Indirect (regional parliaments) and co-opted members (according to result of national election) Party politics 18
  • 19. Functions of Second Chambers  Exercise of joint competencies  Constitutional amendments  Legislative review  State of emergency or declaration of war  Co-appointment of judges of the Const. Court  Aggregation / representation of region / state interests & bargaining  Additional power of parties if majorities in first and second chamber do not coincide  Conciliation with first chamber (which can often override second chamber with qualified majority) 19
  • 20. • Legislative powers : Electoral law, police, education, universities, forests, agriculture, fisheries, health, irrigation, sports, museums & archaeology, urban development , regional / local taxes & revenue; tourism; transport; local authorities; markets; welfare of “tribes”; penal law (U.S.A) Protection of land and property rights Languages of instruction: Only with approval of region / state govt. Selection of & control over officers and staff working in unit administration State / regional govt. decides upon investment & provides grants for development works Executive branch: Election, size & principles of representation of minorities Frequent Competencies of Units 20