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Challenges to Representative Democracy

A European Perspective


Robert Wiszniowski

Using different perspectives and various approaches, this collection of diagnostic texts aims at presenting all the possible faces of the contemporary Nation-State. Based on political science methodology, this volume is devoted to both theory and practice. The structure of the book is unconventional. The issues presented are extremely contextual, subject to an ongoing discussion and mostly unpredictable. From the scientific point of view, the territorial differentiation in the traditional uniform of the Nation-State is simply reconfigured and reshaped due to the new logic of internal market competition.
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Electoral systems in regional politics of supremacy


Robert Alberski

University of Wrocław, Poland

The most common dilemma for a modern electoral systems, both in the consolidated democracies of Western Europe, as well as young democracies in central and eastern parts of the continent, is to ensure a balance between representation, concentration and participation (Nohlen 2004, p. 189). It is obvious that in modern countries the electoral system must ensure that political parties have the opportunity to obtain parliamentary representation adequate to their actual population. It should also be possible to create a stable post-election parliamentary majority, which will lead to the establishment of the government and allow its smooth operation during the term. Moreover, in the context of citizens’ rising expectations as to the impact on policy-making and political accountability of deputies, the electoral system should allow voters to not only express their preference with reference to the party, but also, and perhaps above all, personal preferences. However, as repeatedly emphasized in the literature on this subject, these functions are difficult to reconcile in an optimal way (e.g. Urwin 1977; Lijphart 1990; Gallagher, Laver, Mair 1992; Shugart 1992; Klein 1998; Nohlen 2004; Wojtasik 2012).

The purpose of this article is, however, to look at contemporary electoral systems slightly from a different angle, in the context of reviving in many European countries cultural, ethnic, and those on the axis of the center-periphery sociopolitical divisions (Lipset, Rokkan 1967, pp. 95-101; Lipset 1995, pp. 48-80). The result is a meaningful disclosure...

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