"A Theoretical Perspective on Multi-level Systems in Europe: Constitutional Power and Partisan Conflict"
Comparative European Politics
Reason for embargo
This article distinguishes three constitutionally defined categories of multi-level systems – confederations, federal arrangements and regionalized arrangements, which differ in whether their lower-level governments enjoy constitutional protection and whether we find a constitutional hierarchy between central and lower levels of government. We argue that the constitutional category a multi-level system belongs to systematically shapes first, the dominant mode of day-to-day intergovernmental coordination, second, the mode of formal competence (re)allocation; and third, the relative impact of party (in)congruence across central and lower-level governments on these coordination processes, respectively. The article then specifies the indicators used to test the hypotheses across the range of case studies. It finally shows how the multi-level systems covered in this special issue span the confederal – federal – regionalized spectrum and thus allow for an encompassing comparative assessment of multi-level dynamics and their long-term evolution.
Vol. 12, Issue 4/5, pp. 367 - 383