Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Lijphart’s models of democracy | Coms Paper

The assignments will be in the form of a position paper. A position paper is supposed to be up to 3 pages and:provide a short summary of the main points made by the reviewed articles/authorspresent the main arguments of the textsprovide your individual comments, thoughts and critique on the arguments and the conclusions, reached by the authors.Arend Lijphart
Patterns of Democracy
Yale University Press, 1999
The Westminster Model of Democracy
The Consensus Model of Democracy
Thirty-Six Democracies
Party Systems: Two-Party and Multiparty Patterns
Cabinets: Concentration Versus Sharing of
Executive Power
Executive-Legislative Relations: Patterns of
Dominance and Balance of Power
Electoral Systems: Majority and Plurality Methods
Versus Proportional Representation
Interest Groups: Pluralism Versus Corporatism
Division of Power: The Federal-Unitary and
Centralized-Decentralized Contrasts
Parliaments and Congresses: Concentration Versus
Division of Legislative Power
Judicial Review
Central Banks: Independence Versus Dependence
The Two-Dimensional Conceptual Map of Democracy 243
Macro-Economic Management and the Control of
Violence: Does Consensus Democracy Make a
16 The Quality of Democracy and a “Kinder, Gentler”
Democracy: Consensus Democracy Makes a Difference 275
17 Conclusions and Reco=endations
Appendix A. Two Dimensions and Ten Basic Variables,
1945-96 and 1971-96
Appendix B. Alternative Measure of Multipartism,
Cabinet Composition, and Disproportionality,
1945-96 and 1971-96
My book Democracies, published in 1984, was a comparative study of twenty-one democracies in the period 194580. Its most important findings were (1) that the main institutional rules and practices of modern democracies-such as the
organization and operation of executives, legislatures, party systems, electoral systems, and the relationships between central
and lower-level governments-can all be measured on scales
from majoritarianism at one end to consensus on the other,
(2) that these institutional characteristics form two distinct clusters, and (3) that, based on this dichotomous clustering, a twodimensional “conceptual map” of democracy can be drawn on
which each of the democracies can be located. My original plan
for a second edition was to reinforce this theoretical framework
and the empirical findings mainly by means of an update to the
mid-1990s-an almcst 50 percent increase in the total time
span-with only a few additional corrections and adjustments.
When I began work on the revision, how6ver, I realized that
it offered me a great opportunity for much more drastic improvements. I decided to add not just the updated materials but
also fifteen new countries, new operationalizations of the institutional variables, two completely new institutional variables,
an attempt to gauge the stability of the countries’ positions on
the conceptual map, and an analysis of the performance of the
different types of democracy with regard to a large number of
public policies. As a result, while Patterns of Democracy grew
out of Democracies, it has become an entirely new book rather
than a second edition.
For those readers who are familiar with Democracies, let me
describe the principal changes in Patterns of Democracy in
somewhat greater detail:
1. Patterns of Democracy covers thirty-six countries-fifteen
more than the twenty-one countries of Democracies. This new
set of thirty-six countries is not just numerically larger but considerably more diverse. The original twenty-one democracies
were all industrialized nations and, with one exception (Japan),
Western countries. The fifteen new countries include four European nations (Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Malta), but the other
eleven-almost one-third of the total of thirty-six-are developing countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Asia,
and the Pacific. This greater diversity provides a critical test of
the two-dimensional pattern found in Democracies. A minor
change from Democracies is that I dropped the French Fourth
Republic (1946-58) because it lasted only twelve years-in contrast with the minimum of almost twenty years of democracy for
all other cases; in this book, “France” means the Fifth Republic
from 1958 on.
Z. In Democracies, I analyzed the twenty-one democracies
from their first national elections in or soon after 1945 until the
end of 1980. Patterns of Democracy extends this period until
the middle of 1996. For the original countries (except France),
the starting-point is still the second half of the 1940s; for the
others, the analysis begins with their first elections upon the
achievement of independence or the resumption of democracy-ranging from 1953 (Costa Rica) to 1977 (India, Papua New
Guinea, and Spain).
3. The two new institutions analyzed in Patterns of Democracy are interest groups and central banks (Chapters 9 and 13).
Two other variables that were discussed prominently in Democ-
racies and given chapters of their own-the issue dimensions of
partisan conflict and referendums-are “demoted” in Patterns
of Democracy. I now discuss them more briefly in Chapters 5
and lZ, and I have dropped the issue dimensions as one of the
five elements of the first cluster of characteristics because, unlike all the other variables, it is not an institutional characteristic. The first cluster still consists of five variables, however, because the interest group system is now added to it. The second
cluster is expanded from three to five elements: I split the variable of constitutional rigidity versus flexibility into two separate variables-the difficulty of constitutional amendment and
the strength of judicial review-and I added the variable of central bank independence.
4. I critically reviewed the operationalization of all of the
institutional characteristics, and I found that almost all could
be, and should be, iroproved. My overriding objective was to
maximize the validity of my quantitative indicators-that is, to
capture the “reality” of the political phenomena, which are
often difficult to quantify, as closely as possible. One frequent
problem was that I was faced with two alternative operationalizations that appeared to be equally justified. In such cases, I
consistently chose to “split the difference” by combining or
averaging the alternatives instead of more or less arbitrarily
picking one instead of the other. In the end, only the operationalization of the party system variable-in terms of the effective number of parliamentary parties-survived almost (but
not completely) in’.act from Democracies. All of the others were
modified to a signlficant extent.
5. In Democracies, I placed my democracies on the conceptual map of democracy on the baSis of their average institutional
practices in the thirty to thirty-five years under consideration; I
did not raise the question of how much change may have occurred over time. Chapter 14 of Patterns ofDemocracy does look
into this matter by dividing the approximately fifty years from
1945 to 1996 into separate periods of1945-70 and 1971-96 and
by showing how much-or how little-twenty-six of the democracies (those with a sufficient number of years in the first period) shifted their positions on the conceptual map from the first
to the second period.
6. Perhaps the most important new subject covered in Pattems of Democracy is the “so what?” question: does the type of
democracy make a difference for public policy and for the effectiveness of government? Chapter 15 investigates the relationship between the degree of consensus democracy and how successful governments are in their macroeconomic management
(such as economic growth and the control of inflation and unemployment) and the control of violence. Chapter 16 looks at
several indicators of the quality of democracy (such as women’s
representation, equality, and voter participation) and the records of the governments with regard to welfare policies, environmental protection, criminal justice, and economic aid to
developing countries.
7. I began Democracies with sketches of British and New
Zealand politics as illustrative examples of the Westminster
model of democracy and similar brief accounts of Swiss and
Belgian democracy as examples of the consensus model. Pattems of Democracy updates these four sketches and adds Barbados and the European Union as two further examples of the
respective models.
8. Democracies presented the relationships between the different variables by means of tables with cross-tabulations. In
Pattems of Democracy, I generally use scattergrams that show
these relationships and the positions of each of the thirty-six
democracies in a much clearer, more accurate, and visually
more attractive fashion.
9. Pattems of Democracy adds an appendix with the values on all ten institutional variables and the two overall
majoritarian-consensus dimensions for the entire period 194596 and for the shorter period 1971-96. The ready availability of
these basic data as part of the book should facilitate replications
that other scholars may want to perform as well as the use of
these data for further research.
It would have been impossible for me to analyze the thirty-
six countries covered inPattems ofDemocracy without the help
of a host of scholarly advisers-and almost impossible without
the invention of email! I am extremely grateful for all of the facts
and interpretations contributed by my advisers and for their
unfailingly prompt responses to my numerous queries.
On the Latin American democracies, I received invaluable
assistance from Octavio Amorim Neto, John M. Carey, Brian F.
Crisp, Michael J. Coppedge, Jonathan Hartlyn, Gary Hoskin,
Mark P. Jones, J. Ray Kennedy, Scott Mainwaring, and Matthew
S. Shugart. Ralph R. Premdas was a key consultant on the Caribbean democracies, together with Edward M. Dew, Neville R.
Francis, Percy C. Hintzen, and Fragano S. Ledgister. Pradeep K.
Chhibber and Ashutosh Varshney helped me solve a number of
puzzles in the politics of India. With regard to some of the small
and underanalyzed countries, I was particularly dependent on
the willingness of area and country experts to provide facts and
explanations: John D. Holm, Bryce Kunimoto, Shaheen Mozaffar, and Andrew S. Reynolds on Botswana; John C. Lane on
Malta; Hansraj Mathur and Larry W. Bowman on Mauritius; and
Ralph Premdas (again) as well as Ben Reilly and Ron May on
Papua New Guinea.
Nathaniel L. Beck, Susanne Lohmann, Sylvia Maxfield,
Pierre 1.. Siklos, and Steven B. Webb advised me on central
banks; Miriam A. Golden, Stephan Haggard, Neil J. Mitchell,
Daniel R. Nielson, Adam Przeworski, and Alan Siaroff on interest groups; and Martin Shapiro and Alec Stone on judicial review. On other countries and subjects I benefited from the help
and suggestions of John S. Ambler, Matthew A. Baum, Peter J.
Bowman, Thomas C. Bruneau, Gary W. Cox, Markus M. 1.. Crepaz, Robert G. Cushing, Robert A. Dahl, Larry Diamond, Panayote E. Dimitras, Giuseppe Di Palma, James N. Druckman,
Svante O. Ersson, Bernard Grofinan, Arnold J. Heidenheimer,
Charles O. Jones, Ellis S. Krauss, Samuel H. Kernell, Michael
Laver, Thomas C. Lundberg, Malcolm Mackerras, Peter Mair,
Jane Mansbridge, Marc F. Plattner, G. Bingham Powell, Jr., Steven R. Reed, Manfred G. Schmidt, Kaare Strom, Wilfried Swenden, Rein Taagepera, Paul V. Warwick, and Demet Yalcin.
In October 1997, I gave an intensive two-week seminar,
largely based on draft materials for Patterns ofDemocracy, at the
Institute for Advanced Studies in Vienna; I am grateful for the
many helpful co=ents I received from Josef Melchior, Bernhard Kittel, and the graduate students who participated in the
seminar sessions. In April and May 1998, I gave similar lectures
and seminars at several universities in New Zealand: the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, the University of Auckland, Victoria University of Wellington, and the University of
Waikato in Hamilton. Here, too, I benefited from many useful
reactions, and I want to thank Peter Aimer, Jonathan Boston,
John Henderson, Martin Holland, Keith Jackson, Raymond Miller, Nigel S. Roberts, and Jack Vowles in particular.
James N. Druckman expertly executed the factor analysis reported in Chapter 14. Ian Budge, Hans Keman, and Jaap Woldendorp provided me with their new data on cabinet formation
before these were published. Several other scholars also generously shared their not yet published or only partly published
data with me: data on the composition of federal chambers from
Alfred Stepan and Wilfried Swenden’s Federal Databank; data
on the distance between gove=ents and voters collected by
John D. Huber and G. Bingham Powell, Jr.; and Christopher J.
Anderson and Christine A. Guillory’s data on satisfaction with
democracy. Last, but certainly not least, I am very grateful for the
work of my research assistants Nastaran Afari, Risa A. Brooks,
Linda L. Christian, and Stephen M. Swindle.
There are many ways in which, in principle, a democracy can be organized and run; in practice, too, modern
.democracies exhibit a variety of formal gove=ental institutions, like legislatures and courts, as well as political party and
interest group systems. However, clear patterns and regularities
appear when these institutions are examined from the perspective of how majoritarian or how consensual their rules and practices are. The majoritarianism-consensus contrast arises from
the most basic and literal definition of democracy-gove=ent
by the people or, in representative democracy, gove=ent by
the representatives of the people-and from President Abraham
Lincoln’s famous further stipulation that democracy means government not only bybut also for the people-that is, gove=ent
in accordance with the people’s preferences.’
Defining democracy as “government by and for the people”
raises a fundamental question: who will do the governing and to
whose interests should the gove=ent be responsive when the
people are in disagreement and have divergent preferences?
1. As Clifford D. May (1987) points out, credit for this definition should
probably go to Daniel Webster instead of Lincoln. Webster gave an address in
1830-thirty-three years before Lincoln’s Gettysburg address-m which he spoke
of a “people’s government, made for the people, made by the people, and answerable to the people.”
One answer to this dile=a is: the majority of the people. This
is the essence of the majoritarian model of democracy. The majoritarian answer is simple and straightforward and has great
appeal because gove=ent by the majority and in accordance
with the majority’s wishes obviously comes closer to the democratic ideal of “gove=ent by and for the people” than government by and responsive to a minority.
The alternative answer to the dile=a is: as many people as
possible. This is the crux of the consensus model. It does not
differ from the majoritarian model in accepting that majority
rule is better than minority rule, but it accepts majority rule only
as a minimum requlrement: instead of being satisfied with narrow decision-making majorities, it seeks to maximize the size of
these majorities. Its rules and institutions aim at broad participation in gove=ent and broad agreement on the policies that
the gove=ent should pursue. The majoritl)rian model concentrates political power in the hands of a bare majority-and often
even merely a plurality instead of a majority, as Chapter 2 will
show-whereas the consensus model tries to share, disperse,
and limit power in a variety of ways. A closely related difference
is that the majoritarian model of democracy is exclusive, competitive, and adversarial, whereas the consensus model is characterized by inclusiveness, bargaining, and compromise; for
this reason, consensus democracy could also be termed “negotiation democracy” (Kaiser 1997, 434).
Ten differences with regard to the most important democratic institutions and rules can be deduced from the majoritarian and consensus principles. Because the majoritarian characteristics are derived from the same principle and hence are
logically connected, one could also expect them to occur together in the real world; the same applies to the consensus characteristics. All ten variables could therefore be expected to be
closely related. Previous research has largely confirmed these
expectations-with one major exception: the variables cluster in
two clearly separate dimensions (Lijphart 1984, 211-22; 1997a,
196-201). The first dimension groups five characteristics of the
arrangement of executive power, the party and electoral systems, and interest groups. For brevity’s sake, I shall refer to this
first dimension as the executives-parties dimension. Since most
of the five differences on the second dimension are co=only
associated with the contrast between federalism and unitary
gove=ent-a matter to which I shall return shortly-I shall
call this second dimension the federal-unitary dimension.
The ten differences are formulated below in terms of dichot0mous contrasts between the majoritarian and consensus models, but they are all variables on which particular countries may
be at either end of the continuum or anywhere in between. The
majoritarian characteristic is listed first in each case. The five
differences on the executives-parties dimension are as follows:
. 1. Concentration of executive power in single-party majority cabinets versus executive power-sharing in broad multiparty coalitions.
2. Executive-legislative relationships in which the executive is dominant versus executive-legislative balance of
3. Two-party versus multiparty systems.
4. Majoritarian and disproportional electoral systems versus proportional representation.
5. Pluralist interest group systems with free-for-all competition among groups versus coordinated and “corporatist” interest group systems aimed at compromise and
The five differences on the federal-unitary dimension are the
1. Unitary and centralized gove=ent versus federal and
decentralized gove=ent.
2. Concentration of legislative power in a unicameral legislature versus division of legislative power between two
equally strong but differently constituted houses.
3. Flexible constitutions that can be amended by simple majorities versus rigid constitutions that can be changed
only by extraordinary majorities.
4. Systems in which legislatures have the final word on the
constitutionality of their own legislation versus systems
in which laws are subject to a judicial review of their
constitutionality by supreme or constitutional courts.
5. Central banks that are dependent on the executive versus
independent central banks.
One plausible explanation of this two-dimensional pattern is
suggested by theorists offederalism like Ivo D. Duchacek (1970),
Daniel J. Elazar (1968), Carl J. Friedrich (1950, 189-221), and
K. C. Wheare (1946). These scholars maintain that federalism
has primary and secondary meanings. Its primary definition is:
a guaranteed division of power between the central government
and regional governments. The secondary characteristics are
strong bicameralism, a rigid constitution, and strong judicial
review. Their argument is that the guarantee of a federal division
of power can work well only if (1) both the guarantee and the
exact lines of the division of power are clearly stated in the
constitution and this guarantee cannot be changed unilaterally
at either the central or regional level-hence the need for a rigid
constitution, (2) there is a neutral arbiter who can resolve .conflicts concerning the division of power between the two levels of
government-hence the need for judicial review, and (3) there is
a federal chamber in the national legislature in which the regions have strong representation-hence the need for strong bicameralism; moreover, (4) the main purpose of federalism is
to promote and protect a decentral…
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