Since the end of the Second World War, a set of democratic European countries have established a decentralized system of government based on federal or regional patterns. Some of these systems initially displayed an asymmetrical trend, however, some democracies have implemented a subsequent process of re-symmetrization that changes the structure and the legitimization of the previous political agreements. Charting the evolution of decentralization processes and asymmetries implemented in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Ukraine and the United Kingdom, leading international scholars illustrate which countries have evolved more symmetrically, why this is so and what the role of political actors in these processes have been. In doing so, each case study: - Examines the causes of the legal and constitutional asymmetries and the main political cleavages. - Analyses the main institutions, actors and factors that influence the political dynamics of the territorial debate. - Questions whether there is such a process of re-symmetrization - Presents the main actors in favour of the process of re-symmetrization and of maintaining the constitutional and legal asymmetries Written accessibly and contributing to key debates on federalism and asymmetry, Federalism beyond Federations appeals to academics, politicians, decision-makers and all those interested in the political problems facing modern democracies.
Ferran Requejo, Full professor, Department of Political and Social Sciences, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Catalonia.
'This collection of incisive essays documents new processes of symmetrization in Europe and enrich the concept of asymmetry. Ferran Requejo and Klaus-JÃ¼rgen Nagel have assembled the best minds in the fields of comparative politics and political theory. Federalism beyond Federations might well be a groundbreaking work as it disentangles known dyads of symmetry and centralization and asymmetry and decentralization, and significantly deepens our knowledge of federal practices.' Alain-G. Gagnon, University of Quebec, Montreal, Canada 'The volume offers original and analytically rich insight into each country’s decentralization process, with each contributor carefully examining the causes of resymmetrization... the processes described in this volume are exemplary and indicative of the next stage of European integration. The processes examined here, at the regional, national, and European level, speak to those of federal countries and multilevel systems more generally. In all, this volume demonstrates that some of the most innovative and stringent federalism research is developed in non-federal countries.' Publius: The Journal of Federalism