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Direct democracy and political conflict: institutional evolution in the 19th century


Leemann, Lucas (2019). Direct democracy and political conflict: institutional evolution in the 19th century. In: Invited talk, Dublin, 29 March 2019 - 29 March 2019.

Abstract

Direct democratic institutions allow citizens to directly influence policy decisions. They have the potential to lower the influence of legislative and executive bodies while allowing citizens to do more than periodically elect representatives. The research question of this paper asks: What explains the adoption of direct democratic institutions (DDIs) in representative democracies? I argue that the adoption and extension of direct democracy is fueled by the electoral distortion caused by majoritarian elections. Groups that cannot translate electoral power into political power seek to change the institutional setting. The analysis is carried out on a novel data set of constitutional changes in all Swiss cantons during the 19th century and provides insights as to how and when DDIs are introduced or extended.

Abstract

Direct democratic institutions allow citizens to directly influence policy decisions. They have the potential to lower the influence of legislative and executive bodies while allowing citizens to do more than periodically elect representatives. The research question of this paper asks: What explains the adoption of direct democratic institutions (DDIs) in representative democracies? I argue that the adoption and extension of direct democracy is fueled by the electoral distortion caused by majoritarian elections. Groups that cannot translate electoral power into political power seek to change the institutional setting. The analysis is carried out on a novel data set of constitutional changes in all Swiss cantons during the 19th century and provides insights as to how and when DDIs are introduced or extended.

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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:29 March 2019
Deposited On:15 Jan 2020 09:50
Last Modified:16 Jan 2020 04:16
OA Status:Closed

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Content: Accepted Version
Language: English
Filetype: PDF - Registered users only until 29 March 2023
Size: 1MB
Embargo till: 2023-03-29