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The impact of federal agglomeration policy on Swiss federalism: Governance change in Swiss metropolitan areas


Widmer, Céline (2012). The impact of federal agglomeration policy on Swiss federalism: Governance change in Swiss metropolitan areas. In: IPSA World Congress 2012, Madrid, 8 July 2012 - 12 July 2012.

Abstract

Switzerland is a highly urbanised country. Today, the growing metropolitan areas do not cor-respond to the political-administrative boundaries anymore. In terms of political institutions, Swiss metropolitan areas are highly fragmented; this poses a challenge for the governance capacity in urban areas. In 2001, a federal agglomeration policy was launched, marking the first time the federal government directly interfered in urban affairs. With this new agglom-eration policy, the federal government wants to foster vertical and horizontal cooperation between the different federal levels.
Whereas theories of federalism help to understand systems of interlocking politics in multi-level governance, the politics of scale approach draws attention to the relationship and the distribution of power among different federal state levels. Drawing a link between theories of federalism and the politics of scale approach, this paper proposes a theoretical framework to analyse the construction of new levels of governance and of the structures of negotiation be-tween the different levels of governance within the multi-tiered hierarchy. Tackling the ques-tion of multilevel governance with an analysis of the politics of scale will allow me to desig-nate new conflict lines and the change in the relationship between the different federal state levels. The paper presents first empirical results based on this theoretical framework.

Abstract

Switzerland is a highly urbanised country. Today, the growing metropolitan areas do not cor-respond to the political-administrative boundaries anymore. In terms of political institutions, Swiss metropolitan areas are highly fragmented; this poses a challenge for the governance capacity in urban areas. In 2001, a federal agglomeration policy was launched, marking the first time the federal government directly interfered in urban affairs. With this new agglom-eration policy, the federal government wants to foster vertical and horizontal cooperation between the different federal levels.
Whereas theories of federalism help to understand systems of interlocking politics in multi-level governance, the politics of scale approach draws attention to the relationship and the distribution of power among different federal state levels. Drawing a link between theories of federalism and the politics of scale approach, this paper proposes a theoretical framework to analyse the construction of new levels of governance and of the structures of negotiation be-tween the different levels of governance within the multi-tiered hierarchy. Tackling the ques-tion of multilevel governance with an analysis of the politics of scale will allow me to desig-nate new conflict lines and the change in the relationship between the different federal state levels. The paper presents first empirical results based on this theoretical framework.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Language:English
Event End Date:12 July 2012
Deposited On:14 Feb 2013 13:16
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 16:26
Related URLs:http://www.ipsa.org/events/congress/madrid2012

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