1st Edition

Non-territorial Autonomy in Divided Societies Comparative Perspectives

Edited By John Coakley Copyright 2017
    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    Non-territorial autonomy is an unusual method of government based on the notion of the devolution of power to entities within the state which exercise jurisdiction over a population defined by personal features (such as opting for a particular ethnic nationality) rather than by geographical location (such as the region in which they live). Developed theoretically by Karl Renner in the early twentieth century as a mechanism for responding to demands for self-government from dispersed minorities within the Austro-Hungarian empire, it had earlier roots in the Ottoman empire, and later formed the basis for constitutional experiments in Estonia, in Belgium, and in states with sizeable but dispersed minorities. More recently, efforts have been made to apply it in respect of indigenous communities. This approach to the management of ethnic conflict has attracted a small literature, but there is no comprehensive overview of its application. The intention of this volume is to fill this gap, for the first time offering a comparative assessment of the significance of this political institutional device. Authors of case studies follow a common framework.

    This book was published as a special issue of Ethnopolitics.

    1. Introduction: non-territorial minorities and the notion of cultural autonomy (John Coakley, Queen’s University Belfast) 2. The Jewish question and national cultural autonomy in Europe (Roni Gechtman, Mount Saint Vincent University) 3. The Ottoman empire: the millet system (Karen Barkey, Columbia University) 4. Moravia: an early experiment in non-territorial autonomy (Börries Kuzmany, Central European University, Budapest) 5. Estonia: a model for interwar Europe? (David J Smith, University of Glasgow) 6. Belgium: non-territorial and territorial devolution (Emmanuel Dalle Mulle, University of Geneva) 7. Canada: First Nations in a federal state (Bettina Petersohn, University of Edinburgh) 8. The Sami: indigenous autonomy in Scandinavia (Per Selle, University of Bergen) 9. The Maori quest for autonomy in New Zealand (Richard Hill, Victoria University, Wellington) 10. Conclusion: patterns of non-territorial autonomy (John Coakley, Queen’s University Belfast)


    John Coakley is Professor of Politics at Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, and Professor Emeritus at University College Dublin, Ireland


    'Non-territorial Autonomy in Divided Societies can be taken as a first step in the study of non-territorial forms of autonomy and may therefore serve as an extensive introduction for academics who are approaching a new field of research: it poses questions and draws methods of evaluation; it brings back to the front an unfairly neglected field of research; and, finally, it lays the groundwork for a much-needed revival of the topic.'

    Mattia Zaba, School of International Studies of the University of Trento