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Variations on a theme

Elgie, Robert (2005) Variations on a theme. Journal of Democracy, 16 (3). pp. 98-112. ISSN 1045-5736

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Abstract

This paper provides a definition of semipresidentialism and identifies the set of semipresidential countries in the world. It aims to isolate the independent impact of semipresidentialism on democratic performance. The conclusion is that countries should avoid highly presidentialised semipresidential systems, whereas semipresidential systems with ceremonial presidents and strong prime ministers have performed well. In semipresidential systems where both the president and the prime minister have significant powers, the situation is more complex. Many such countries have democratized successfully, but only despite the institutional crises caused by this particular form of semipresidentialism. So, a balanced form of semipresidentialism is a risky choice for newly-democratizing regimes.

Item Type:Article (Published)
Refereed:Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords:semi-presidentialism
Subjects:Social Sciences > Political science
DCU Faculties and Centres:Research Initiatives and Centres > Centre for International Studies (CIS)
DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Science > School of Law and Government
Publisher:Johns Hopkins University Press
Official URL:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/journal_of_democracy/v016/16.3elgie.html
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:64
Deposited On:14 Dec 2006 by DORAS Administrator. Last Modified 30 Jan 2009 12:19

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