A Research Agenda for Federalism Studies
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A Research Agenda for Federalism Studies

Edited by John Kincaid

In this forward-thinking book, fifteen leading scholars set forth cutting-edge agendas for research on significant facets of federalism, including basic theory, comparative studies, national and subnational constitutionalism, courts, self-rule and shared rule, centralization and decentralization, nationalism and diversity, conflict resolution, gender equity, and federalism challenges in Africa, Asia, and the European Union. More than 40 percent of the world’s population lives under federal arrangements, making federalism not only a major research subject but also a vital political issue worldwide.
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Chapter 13: Federalism and the politics of shared rule

Sean Mueller

Abstract

This chapter deals with shared rule, the other key aspect of federalism next to self-rule. Shared rule has received much less academic attention than self-rule. Shared rule is defined as the ability of regional governments to influence state-wide decisions. It is therefore conceptually different from shared rule understood as centralization or horizontal cooperation, although regions might indeed cooperate with each other when using shared rule to combat further centralization. Shared rule can vary in both form and extent. The main argument advanced in this chapter is that the key to federal success – securing stability, protecting individual liberty and producing collective prosperity – lies in finding the appropriate balance between self-rule and shared rule. Empirically, the Regional Authority Index is presented and critically discussed before an agenda for future research is briefly outlined.

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