Recent years have witnessed substantial work in the legislative studies field. But what do we know about legislatures today and are there clear criteria for comparing and classifying them?
This is a new review of the state of our knowledge of parliament and tackles key questions: Do legislatures matter in legislative terms, and, if so, how much? What is the extent of the legislature’s control of the legislative process. How can we classify legislatures on the basis of their relative legislative performance. Five measures of the policy power of parliaments are applied in the country/region chapters.
This book was previously published as a special issue of the leading Journal of Legislative Studies.
Introduction: Comparing the Legislative Performance of Legislatures David Arter 1. Qualified Exceptionalism: The US Congress in Comparative Perspective John E. Owens and Burdett A. Loomis 2. The Baltic Parliaments: Legislative Performance from Independence to EU Accession Vello Pettai and U¨lle Madise 3. Parliaments and the Enhancement of Democracy on the African Continent: An Analysis of Institutional Capacity and Public Perceptions Lia Nijzink Shaheen Mozaffar and Elisabete Azevedo 4. The French Assemble´e Nationale: The Case of a Weak Legislature? Eric Kerrouche 5. The Influence of Candidate Selection Methods on Legislatures and Legislators: Theoretical Propositions, Methodological Suggestions and Empirical Evidence Reuven Y. Hazan and Gideon Rahat 6. Characterising the Italian Parliament: Legislative Change in Longitudinal Perspective James L. Newell 7. Legislatures in Presidential Systems: The Latin American Experience Carlos Huneeus Fabiola Berrı´os and Rodrigo Cordero 8. Assessing Strength and Weakness in Legislatures: The Case of Denmark Erik Damgaard and Henrik Jensen 9. Social Choice and Comparing Legislatures: Constitutional versus Institutional Constraints Anthony J. McGann 10. Conclusion. Questioning the ‘Mezey Question’: An Interrogatory Framework for the Comparative Study of Legislatures David Arter