From post-conflict Iraqi federalism to the decentralist teachings of the World Bank in the developing world, comparative federalism has found increasingly vibrant applications in practice, particularly in the writing of federal constitutions for post-conflict societies. In its applied form, New Institutionalism prescribes instant constitutional solutions which fail to account for the more problematic uncodified factors.
What is needed is a holistic view which places federal institutions/ constitutions among a number of structural long-term factors. An even-handed evaluation of the promises and pitfalls of federalism is likely to temper the zeal for instant institutional/constitutional engineering.
There is a general trend among recent populist movements to implement measures that interfere with the independence and proper functioning of the judiciary. These movements seek to frame the courts in opposition to the popular will, yet the truth is more complicated than the populists would have us believe.
In this Policy Brief, Professor of French Government and Politics David S Bell analyses the French presidential election and the constitution of the French Fifth Republic. He charts the extraordinary fall from grace of Republican presidential candidate Francois Fillon, following the scandal known as 'Penelopegate', in which he allegedly paid his wife hundreds of thousands of euros of public money for little or no work.
***SPECIAL OFFER - BUY YOUR COPY FOR ONLY £5!***
The debates that began at St Mary's Church, Putney on 28 October 1647 pioneered the liberal, democratic settlement in England: a written constitution, universal suffrage, freedom of conscience and equality before the law. Four centuries later, the 2016 Brexit referendum raised fundamental questions concerning the constitution of the United Kingdom.
In this policy brief, constitutional law and human rights expert Gábor Tóth examines the changing face of authoritarianism, warning that this could become known as the century of authoritarianism as a result of the institutional erosion of democracies around the world.