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The Usage Government-Initiated Referendums in Latin America. Towards a Theory of Referendum Causes

El uso de los referendos de iniciativa gubernamental en AmГ©rica Latina. Hacia una teorГ­a sobre las causas del uso de votaciones populares iniciadas por el gobierno


Department of Comparative Politics, University of Cologne

Within the last two years there is an increase that is considerable the amount of referendums global. The literature that is existing direct democracy has thus far neglected to explain this trend by delivering a regular theory regarding the factors that cause referendums. This study that is explorative at undertaking actions toward closing this space by centering on the particular form of facultative government-initiated referendums (FGIR) and their used in presidential systems. Utilizing QC A (a technique that is case-sensitive in the formal logic of Boolean algebra), this research methodically compares the governmental opportunity structures of 49 presidential systems from 12 Latin American nations to detect the factors that spurred or obstructed the occurrence of FGIR. It concludes that FGIR are closely connected to high quantities of celebration system fragmentation and divided federal government, in other words. two facets which may have for ages been considered problematic when you look at the context of presidential systems, while their obstruction is principally owed into the certain constitutional conditions managing the referendum unit.

Keyword Phrases: Referendums, Latin America, Fragmentation, Direct Democracy.


En las Гєltimas dos dГ©cadas Ma existido alrededor del mundo un considerable aumento en el nГєmero de votaciones populares. Por el contrario, la literatura existente sobre democracia directa no na sabido explicar el fenГіmeno mediante una teorГ­a consistente de las causas de los referendums. Este estudio exploratorio busca paso that is dar un para cerrar esta brecha, enfocГЎndose en los referendum facultativos iniciados por poderes polГ­ticos formales (facultative government-initiated referendums – FGIR) y su uso en los sistemas presidenciales. Utilizando OCA (tГ©cnica basada en lГіgica formal de ГЎlgebra booleanas), este estudio hace una comparaciГіn sistemГЎtica de la estructura de oportunidades polГ­ticas de 49 sistemas presidenciales de 12 paГ­ses de AmГ©rica Latina, para detectar los factores que estimulan u obstruyen la ocurrencia de FGIR. Se concluye que los FGIR estГЎn fuertemente ligados a altos niveles de fragmentaciГіn partidaria y gobiernos divididos, dos factores que han sido problemГЎticos en los contextos de sistemas presidenciales. Por su parte, la obstrucciГіn se tiene que principalmente a provisiones constitucionales especГ­ficas que regulan los dispositivos de las votaciones populares iniciadas por el gobierno.

Palabras Clave: Plebiscito, AmГ©rica Latina, fragmentaciГіn, democracia directa.


From the 1960s onwards, various countries around the globe embraced the concept of direct democracy and in the last two years, the request of direct democratic instruments has grown significantly (LeDuc, 2003). 2 This trend has attracted scholarly attention and over the past few years, considerable research investigating direct democracy is posted in well known journals in neuro-scientific governmental technology. To date this literary works has mainly dedicated to the 2 countries that most often utilize referendums, Switzerland additionally the usa from the state degree (Ladner and Brandle, 1999; Gerber, 1996; Papadopulos, 2001; Tolbert and Hero, 1996; Vatter and Freitag, 2006), while a smaller sized wide range of publications have dedicated to the revolution of referendums entailed in the act of European integration (Hug and Sciarini, 2000; Franklin et ah, 1995). These magazines have actually significantly added to the knowledge in connection with effect of referendums on politics as well as on diverse societal aspects. Nevertheless, they usually have not yet produced a theory that is consistent the factors behind referendums. The aim of this paper is always to undertake steps that are initial bridging this space.

Up To a big level, the ‘boom’ in direct democracy may be credited toward the increased quantity of citizen-initiated referendums and, to an inferior level, mandatory referendums (Morel, 2001) This development happens to be welcomed by advocates of direct democracy whom stress the potential of those tools to foster bottom-up involvement and straight accountability (Barber, 1984; Schmitter, 2000). However, on several occasions, non-mandatory referendums on essential governmental concerns have already been initiated by governing bodies in other words. legislatures or professionals. Such government-initiated referendums https://worldsbestdatingsites.com/chat-avenue-review/, which can be known as plebiscites, 3 a term that carries a small connotation that is negative mostly retain control of political decision-making in the possession of of elected officials.

Despite contributing little to the general boost in direct democracy, the event of facultative government-initiated referendums (FGIR) 4 poses a theoretical puzzle (Rahat, 2007).

While it is understandable that citizens will be involved in processes of decision-making when because of the directly to do this, governmental elites’ use of direct democratic instruments is harder to grasp. Exactly just What motivates regulating authorities to start referendums? Why should democratically legitimised representatives voluntarily offer their monopoly up to legislate, redistribute energy downwards, equal themselves with ordinary residents in governmental decision-making, and eventually expose by themselves to your chance of losing during the ballot package? The main purpose of this explorative research is to give you possible answers to those concerns.