Comparative Federalism: A Systematic Inquiry

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Broadview Press, 2006 - 390 pages

Comparative Federalism: A Systematic Inquiry is a uniquely comprehensive, analytic, genuinely comparative, and detailed introduction to the study of federalism in theory and practice. Thomas Hueglin and Alan Fenna draw from their diverse research on federal systems to argue that federalism is increasingly important for democratic governance and conflict management in a globalizing world. They discuss the meaning of federal principles and institutional compromise in the organization of federal systems and then introduce four main model federal systems: America, Canada, Germany, and the European Union. But they don't stop there--they also offer an exploration of federal systems that vary from the four main models, including Switzerland, Australia, Belgium, South Africa, and Spain.

The book also compares federal systems through an examination of the differing European and North American traditions in the history of federal thought. Institutional features of federal systems are evaluated, as are the crucial role that constitutional amendment and judicial review play for the stability and evolutionary dynamic of federal systems. This book serves the dual role of helping the reader understand federalism and providing a comparative framework from which to assess the record of federal systems.

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About the author (2006)

Thomas O. Hueglin is Professor of Political Science at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Canada. He is the author of Early Modern Concepts for a Late Modern World (Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 1999). His articles and book chapters on federalism have appeared in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, and Japanese. Alan Fenna teaches politics and government at Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia. He is the author of Australian Public Policy, 2nd ed. (Longman, 2004) and Essentials of Australian Government (Tertiary Press, 2001).

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