364 pages, 6 1/2 x 9
Release Date:01 Jan 1995

Rethinking Federalism

Citizens, Markets, and Governments in a Changing World

UBC Press

Federalism is at once a set of institutions -- the division of public authority between two or more constitutionally defined orders of government -- and a set of ideas which underpin such institutions. As an idea, federalism points us to issues such as shared and divided sovereignty, multiple loyalties and identities, and governance through multi-level institutions.

Seen in this more complex way, federalism is deeply relevant to a wide range of issues facing contemporary societies. Global forces -- economic and social -- are forcing a rethinking of the role of the central state, with power and authority diffusing both downwards to local and state institutions and upwards to supranational bodies. Economic restructuring is altering relationships within countries, as well as the relationships of countries with each other. At a societal level, the recent growth of ethnic and regional nationalisms -- most dramatically in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, but also in many other countries in western Europe and North America -- is forcing a rethinking of the relationship between state and nation, and of the meaning and content of 'citizenship.'

Rethinking Federalism explores the power and relevance of federalism in the contemporary world, and provides a wide-ranging assessment of its strengths, weaknesses, and potential in a variety of contexts. Interdisciplinary in its approach, it brings together leading scholars from law, economics, sociology, and political science, many of whom draw on their own extensive involvement in the public policy process. Among the contributors, each writing with the authority of experience, are Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa and Jacques Pelkmans on the European Union, Paul Chartrand on Aboriginal rights, Samuel Beer on North American federalism, Alan Cairns on identity, and Vsevolod Vasiliev on citizenship after the breakup of the Soviet Union.

The themes refracted through these different disciplines and political perspectives include nationalism, minority protection, representation, and economic integration. The message throughout this volume is that federalism is not enough -- rights protection and representation are also of fundamental importance in designing multi-level governments.

One of the best books about comparative federalism since the modern classics of the 1950’s and 1960’s ... a sophisticated reassessment of the nature of value of federalism. Joseph Garcea, Canadian Book Review Annual, 1996
Karen Knop is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. Sylvia Ostry is Chair of the Centre for International Studies, University of Toronto, and Chancellor of the University of Waterloo. Richard Simeon is a professor of Political Science and Law at the University of Toronto and Vice-Chair of the Ontario Law Reform Commission. Katherine Swinton is a professor in the Faculty of Law, cross-appointed to the Department of Political Science, at the University of Toronto.

Part One: Introduction

1. Rethinking Federalism in a Changing World / Richard Simeon and Katherine Swinton


Part Two: Citizenship, Identity and Federal Societies

2. Constitutional Government and the Two Faces of Ethnicity: Federalism Is Not Enough / Alan C. Cairns

3. Identification in Transnational Political Communities / Raymond Breton

4. The New Pluralism: Regionalism, Ethnicity, and Language in Western Europe / Guy Kirsch

5. The Federal Experience in Yugoslavia / Mihailo Markovic

6. Questions of Citizenship after the Breakup of the USSR / Vsevolod Ivanovich Vasiliev

7. Citizenship Claims: Routes to Representation in a Federal System / Jane Jenson

8. The Aboriginal Peoples in Canada and Renewal of the Federation / Paul L.A.H. Chartrand


Part Three: The Economics of Federalism

9. Is Federalism the Future? An Economic Perspective / Kenneth Norrie

10. Economic Federalism and the European Union / Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa

11. Governing European Union: From Pre-Federal to Federal Economic Integration / Jacques Pelkmans

12. Central Asia: From Administrative Command Integration to Commonwealth of Independent States / Bakhtior Islamov

13. American Federalism: An Economic Perspective / Alice Rivlin


Part Four: The Law and Politics of Federalism

14. New Wine in Old Bottles? Federalism and Nation States in the Twenty-First Century: A Conceptual Overview / Thomas O. Hueglin

15. Federalism and the Nation State: What Can Be Learned from the American Experience? / Samuel H. Beer

16. Canada and the United States: Lessons from the North American Experience / Richard Simeon

17. Federalism, Democracy, and Regulatory Reform: A Sceptical View of the Case of Decentralization / Robert Howse

18. Federalism, the Charter, and the Courts: Rethinking Constitutional Dialogue in Canada / Katherine Swinton

19. Central and Eastern European Federations: Communist Theory and Practice / Victor Knapp

20. Disintegration of the Soviet 'Federation' and the 'Federalization' of Ukraine / Volodymyr Vassylenko


Part Five: Conclusion

21. Multinationalism and the Federal Idea: A Synopsis / John Meisel

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