Mechanisms of Democracy: Institutional Design Writ Small

Mechanisms of Democracy: Institutional Design Writ Small

by Adrian Vermeule
     
 

What institutional arrangements should a well-functioning constitutional democracy have?

Most of the relevant literatures in law, political science, political theory, and economics address this question by discussing institutional design writ large. In this book, Adrian Vermeule moves beyond these debates, changing the focus to institutional design writ small.

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Overview

What institutional arrangements should a well-functioning constitutional democracy have?

Most of the relevant literatures in law, political science, political theory, and economics address this question by discussing institutional design writ large. In this book, Adrian Vermeule moves beyond these debates, changing the focus to institutional design writ small.

In established constitutional polities, Vermeule argues that law can and should - and to some extent already does - provide mechanisms of democracy: a repertoire of small-scale institutional devices and innovations that can have surprisingly large effects, promoting democratic values of impartial, accountable and deliberative government. Examples include legal rules that promote impartiality by depriving officials of the information they need to act in self-interested ways; voting rules that create the right kind and amount of accountability for political officials and judges; and legislative rules that structure deliberation, in part by adjusting the conditions under which deliberation occurs transparently or instead secretly.

Drawing upon a range of social science tools from economics, political science, and other disciplines, Vermeule carefully describes the mechanisms of democracy and indicates the conditions under which they can succeed.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195333466
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
07/24/2007
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 6.30(h) x 1.10(d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

Introductionl
I. Impartiality and Uncertainty
1. The Veil of Uncertainty:
2. The Limits of Uncertaintyl:
II. Accountability and Voting
3. Submajority Voting Rules: Forcing Accountability:
4. Absolute Majority Rules: Optimizing Accountability:
5. Delegation, Accountability and Judgingl:
III. Deliberation and Transparency
6. Optimizing Transparency: The Budget Process:
7. Optimizing Deliberation: Constitutional Issues in Congressl:
Conclusion: Institutional Design as a Going Concern
Acknowledgements & Sources

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