Constitutional design, legislative procedures and agenda control in presidential systems : an empirical analysis of four Central American countries in comparative perspective

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Show simple item record AJENJO FRESNO, Natalia en 2006-06-09T09:04:40Z 2006-06-09T09:04:40Z 2005 en 2005 en
dc.identifier.citation Florence, European University Institute, 2005
dc.description Defence date: 29 June 2005
dc.description Examining board: Prof. Manuela Alcantara (Univeristy of Salamanca, Spain) ; Prof. Maurizio Cotta (University of Siena, Italy) ; Prof. Adirenne Heritier (European University Institute, Florence) ; Prof. Philippe Schmitter (European University Institute, Supervisor)
dc.description First made available online on 12 January 2015.
dc.description.abstract The thesis covers issues of constitutional design, legislative procedures and agenda control in presidential systems, with specific empirical application to four Central American cases in a comparative perspective. The results relate to the critical view that presidential systems are inherently prone to institutional deadlock, deriving from their rigid constitutional design. My findings suggest that constitutional rules only determine broad parameters of variation, and that greater attention should be paid to the endogenous procedural design of the legislative process of policy approval in the explanation of institutional performance and inter-branch dynamics. The work is comparative and bridges quantitative and qualitative analysis. The data employed are original and allow for an innovative connection between theory-driven hypotheses on the incentives for majority political actors to circumvent ordinary procedures and play strategically employing procedural choices and political outcomes, by assessing the patterns of legislative production. The hypotheses are generated with attention to the degree of aggregation of interests in the decision-making process, as a measure of the representativeness of the decision-making process and hence as a general characteristic of the everyday democratic process. In fact, while democracy is understood as a process and not as a formal procedure, it is important to observe procedures as subtle devices where majority actors may find embedded comparative advantages to impose their political agenda unilaterally. The analysis further represents a thorough effort of theory testing whereby a competitive assessment of informational theories of legislative politics, exogenous factors such as electoral pressures or endogenous contextual characteristics such as the degree of fragmentation and polarization on the floor, is unpacked and delivers important analytical refinements to these theories. Finally, the normative agenda for analysis includes a view on constitutional choice and on methodological biases in the literature of Comparative Politics which have a large impact on the research output. The theoretical, substantive and methodological implications of the findings are thus reinserted into a normative view on procedural justice and the quality of democracy.
dc.format.medium Paper en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en en
dc.relation.ispartofseries EUI PhD theses en
dc.relation.ispartofseries Department of Political and Social Sciences en
dc.rights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.subject.lcsh Comparative government -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh Parliamentary practice -- Central America
dc.subject.lcsh Executive power -- Central America
dc.subject.lcsh Central America -- Politics and government
dc.title Constitutional design, legislative procedures and agenda control in presidential systems : an empirical analysis of four Central American countries in comparative perspective en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.identifier.doi 10.2870/915121
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