The Impact of Legislatures : A Quarter-Century of The Journal of Legislative Studies book cover
1st Edition

The Impact of Legislatures
A Quarter-Century of The Journal of Legislative Studies

Edited By

Philip Norton

ISBN 9780367471446
Published July 15, 2020 by Routledge
518 Pages

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Book Description

The Impact of Legislatures brings together key articles and path-breaking scholarship published in The Journal of Legislative Studies during its first 25 years of publication, enabling the reader to make sense of the impact of legislatures in the modern world.

Encompassing theory, comparative analysis, and county-based empirical studies, the volume examines the impact of legislatures as the key representative institutions of nations, addressing their relationships both to government and to the people. Legislatures are ubiquitous. They provide legitimacy to measures of public policy and to government. As such, they are key to how a nation is governed. But they do much more than confer legitimacy. They are generally multi-functional and functionally adaptable bodies, and are an essential link between citizen and government. However, scholarship on them has not been extensive and has often been descriptive and country- specific, limiting the capacity to make sense of them as a particular species of institution. The chapters in this volume reflect scholarship that helps the reader appreciate the significance of the place and consequences of legislatures, examining not only the relationship between the legislature and the executive, but also the oft-neglected relationship between legislatures and the people.

Reflecting the growing body of research in the field of legislative studies, carried by The Journal of Legislative Studies since its inception in 1995, The Impact of Legislatures is essential reading for anyone wishing to understand the impact of legislatures in the world today.

Table of Contents


Philip Norton


1. Rational-choice theory in legislative studies: Models of politics without romanticism

Thomas Saalfeld

2. Conditional agenda-setting and decision-making inside the European parliament

George Tsebelis


3. Introduction: Comparing the Legislative Performance of Legislatures

David Arter

4. Social Choice and Comparing Legislatures: Constitutional versus Institutional Constraints

Anthony J. McGann

5. Rethinking Bicameral Strength: A Three-Dimensional Approach

Meg Russell

6. Conclusion. Questioning the ‘Mezey Question’: An Interrogatory Framework for the Comparative Study of Legislatures

David Arter


7. Party Unity in Parliamentary Democracies: A Comparative Analysis

Ulrich Sieberer

8. Parliamentary Consociationalism in Lebanon: Equal Citizenry vs. Quotated Confessionalism

Imad Salamey and Rhys Payne

9. Parliamentary Opposition in Westminster Democracies: Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand

Andre Kaiser

10. Differences and Changes in Danish Party Organisations: Central Party Organisation Versus Parliamentary Party Group Power

Helene Helboe Pedersen


11. Ethnic Group Representation in Cross-National Comparison

Didier Ruedin

12. Women’s Substantive Representation: Defending Feminist Interests or Women’s Electoral Preferences?

Anouk Lloren

13. State-based Representation and National Policymaking: The Evolution of the Australian Senate and the Federation

Scott Brenton

14. ‘A More Representative Chamber’: Representation and the House of Lords

Hugh Bochel and Andrew Defty


15. Assessing the Influence of Select Committees in the UK: The Education and Skills Committee, 1997-2005

Andrew Hindmoor, Phil Larkin and Andrew Kennon

16. Exploring the Role of ‘Legislators’ in Canada: Do Members of Parliament Influence Policy?

Kelly Blidook

17. Parliament and the poll tax: A case study in parliamentary pressure

Philip Cowley


18. Studying the Relationship between Parliament and Citizens

Cristina Leston-Bandeira

19. How Are Parliaments Using New Media to Engage with Citizens?

Jeffrey Griffith and Cristina Leston-Bandeira

20. Parliament and Citizens in the United Kingdom

Philip Norton

21. Microblogging, Constituency Service and Impression Management: UK MPs and the Use of Twitter

Nigel Jackson and Darren Lilleker


22 Parliamentary Questions, the Behaviour of Legislators, and the Function of Legislatures: An Introduction

Shane Martin

23. Questioning Parliamentary Questions

Olivier Rozenberg and Shane Martin

24. Parliamentary Questioning in 17 European Parliaments: Some Steps towards Comparison

Frederico Russo and Matti Wiberg

25. Parliamentary Questions as Instruments of Substantive Representation: Visible Minorities in the UK House of Commons, 2005-2010

Thomas Saalfeld

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Philip Norton (Lord Norton of Louth) is Professor of Government and Director of the Centre for Legislative Studies at the University of Hull, UK, and is a member of the UK House of Lords. He is the Founding Editor of The Journal of Legislative Studies.