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FEDERALISM   Tags: decentralization  

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Federalism in the Americas

Gibson, Edward L. Federalism and Democracy in Latin America. JHU Press, 2004. [Google Books]
About: This book examines the Latin American experience with federalism and advances the theoretical understanding of politics in federal systems. By means of theoretical essays and case studies, the authors address questions of how and when federal institutions matter for politics, policy-making, and democratic practice. They also offer conceptual approaches for studying federal systems, their origins, and their internal dynamics.


Tommasi, Mariano. "Federalism in Argentina and the Reforms of the 1990s." In Federalism and Economic Reform, edited by Jessica S. Wallack and T. N. Srinivasan, 25-84. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006.

About: Federalism in general, and fiscal federalism in particular, are crucial axes of Argentina’s history, of Argentina’s history, of Argentina’s current situation, and of Argentina’s possible futures. This chapter provides a tour of the recent history of fiscal federalism in Argentina and an overview of its current configuration and main problems.



Jost-Creegan, Kelsey. "Funding Federalism: The Argentine Co-Participation System." The Argentina Independant, August 1, 2012.


Ardanaz, Martín, et al. "The Politics of Federalism in Argentina and its Effects on Governance and Accountability," World Development (2013).
Summary: This paper contributes to an agenda that views the effects of federalism and decentralization as dependent on the incentives of national and subnational political actors. It studies the mechanisms by which subnational actors affect decisions at the central level, in the context of a highly decentralized middle-income democracy, Argentina. 
Ramírez Calvo, Ricardo. "Sub-National Constitutionalism in Argentina. An Overview," Perspectives on Federalism (2012).

Summary: "A federation on paper, Argentina is a highly centralized country, in which economic dependence of the Provinces from the central government has destroyed any kind of autonomy of the sub-national entities. This articles aims to investigate the most important features and contradictions of the Argentinean federalism." [Author]



Serra, José and José Roberto R. Afonso. "Fiscal Federalism in Brazil: An Overview," Cepal Review 91 (2007): 29-51.
Summary: "Although the states and municipalities that comprise the Brazilian Federation have considerable autonomy in raising their own tax income and spending public funds, this is not the outcome of a planned decentralization process. As a contribution to the debate on federative balance in the division of fiscal responsibilities, this paper makes a diagnostic study of the federative framework and recent institutional changes, and proposes a new federative agenda." [Author]
Desposato, Scott W. "The Impact of Federalism on National Party Cohesion in Brazil," Legislative Studies Quarterly (2004): 259-285.
Summary: "This article explores the impact of federalism on national party cohesion. Although credited with increasing economic growth and managing conflict in countries with diverse electorates, federal forms of government have also been blamed for weak party systems because national coalitions may be divided by interstate conflicts." [Author]
Afonso, José R. and de Mello, Luiz, "Brazil: An Evolving Federation"  (Paper Presented at IMF/FAD Seminar on Decentralization, Washington, United States, November 2000).
Summary: "The paper will shed some light on a few aspects of Brazilian federalism that have been overlooked in recent literature, such as the need to improve the quality and efficiency of government spending; strengthening of tax administration and expenditure management and control; institutional developments to ensure compatibility with fiscal adjustment and macroeconomic stability." [Author]
Samuels, David and Fernando Luiz Abrucio. "Federalism and Democratic Transitions: The “New” Politics of the Governors in Brazil,"  Publius 30 (2000): 43-62.
Summary: "This paper examines how and why strong federalism reemerged in Brazil following twenty years of centralizing military rule. Examples are provided of how subnational actors influenced the transition process in the national government and how state based actors and interests challenge Brazil's efforts to consolidate its democracy." [Author]



Gangnon, Alain G. Contemporary Canadian Federalism. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009. [Google Books]

About: "Offering alternative views of the Canadian federal model's realities by covering its foundations, traditions, and institutions, this book considers the ways in which federalism relates to issues such as regionalism, multiculturalism, rights and freedoms, financial distribution, and public policy." [University of Toronto Press Publishing]
Smith, David, E. Federalism and the Constitution of Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2010. [Google Books]
About: "This book examines a series of royal commission and task force inquiries, a succession of federal-provincial conferences, and the competing and controversial terms of the Constitution Act of 1982 in order to evaluate both the popular and governmental understanding of federalism."  [University of Toronto Press Publishing]
Stevenson, Garth. Unfulfilled Union: Canadian Federalism and National Unity Frontcover. McGill-Queen's Press, 2009. [Google Books]
About: The author examines such topics as the origins and objectives of Confederation and the BNA Act of 1867, the interpretation of Canada's federal constitution by the courts, the impact of economic regionalism and Quebec nationalism, financial relations between the federal and provincial levels of government, the consequences of federalism for economic policy, the sources of federal-provincial conflicts and the means to resolve them.  
Taucar, Christopher E. Canadian Federalism and Quebec Sovereignty. New York: Peter Lang Publishing, 2004. [Google Books]

About: "This book examines the successive layers that constitute Canadian federalism to unravel its nature, essence and the successes of its functioning, or the lack thereof, particularly with respect to Quebec." [Amazon]


Boadway, Robin and Ronald Watts. Fiscal Federalism in Canada. Kingston: Institute of Intergovernmental Relations, Queen's University, 2000.

Purpose: To explain the major dynamics affecting fiscal federalism in Canada.

Content: "The report focuses on explaining the current relationship between governments but in doing so a significant amount of attention is given to explaining the historical developments that have led to the current situation." [Author]




"Mexico's Political System: Redrawing the Federal Map." The Economist, March 27, 2003



Cantú, Francisco, and Scott Desposato. "The New Federalism of Mexico’s Party System,"GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Institute of Latin American Studies and Hamburg University Press (2012).

Summary: "This explores the role of formal and informal institutions on party system nationalization in the Mexican political system, focusing on legislative politics. In Mexico, an end of one-party rule transformed the nature of center–periphery relations, empowering subnational actors and giving them incentives to act on the national stage." [Author]
Diaz-Cayeros, Alberto. "Federalism and the Mexican National Fiscal Convention," Stanford University (2003).
Summary: "This paper argues that the largest challenge for Mexico’s federalism is to design an institutional arrangement that strikes a balance between providing enough devolution of tax and spending authority at the local level, while at the same time retaining a strong federal role in the creation of transfer systems that compensate and redress of the vast inequalities that characterize the country." [Author]


Guerrero, Christi Rangel. "Decline of Federalism in Venzuela," Federations Magazine, Forum of Federations (2007). 
Summary: This article relates the history of Federalism in Venzuela, stressing on how president Chà¡vez's revolution leaves no room for a strong federal system.


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