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Antonios E. Platsas

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Susan Rose-Ackerman, Peter L. Lindseth and Blake Emerson

This volume, like the first edition, attempts to capture the complexity of the field of comparative administrative law while distilling certain key elements for further study. Part I concentrates on the relationship between administrative and constitutional law—uncertain, contested, and deeply essential. Part II focuses on a key aspect of government structure—administrative independence with its manifold implications for separation of powers, democratic self-government, and the boundary between law, politics, and policy. Next, Part III highlights the tensions between impartial expertise and public accountability, especially when the executive and independent agencies make general policies. Part IV discusses administrative litigation and the role of the courts in reviewing both individual decisions and secondary norms (‘rules’ in US parlance). Part V considers how administrative law is shaping and is being shaped by the changing boundaries of the state. Part V.A considers the shifting boundary between the public and the private sectors, and part V.B concentrates explicitly on the European Union and its complex relationship with the Member States.

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Bernardo Sordi

This chapter reflects on the history of administrative law against the background of the emergence and evolution of a distinct form of administrative power within the European state over the last two and half centuries. The chapter outlines, in a very general way, answers to several comparative questions: in what ways have the various paths to droit administratif in France, or Verwaltungsrecht in Germany, converged or diverged from the path to administrative law in England (and later America)? Similarly, how have the German or French paths to the Rechtsstaat or the État de droit, respectively, converged or diverged from the Anglo-American path to the Rule of Law? This contribution proceeds on the premise that the particular routes to droit administratif, Verwaltungsrecht, or administrative law must be understood with at least some sensitivity to the various processes of state-formation as well as to the different constitutional histories of the countries concerned. Nevertheless, it would be an error to believe that a comparison of state-building processes could mechanistically provide a clear scale for measuring the intensity of the processes by which a distinct law of administration took shape. The history of state-formation in the various corners of Europe proceeded not merely according to its own specific tempos but also on a different factual level from that of the conceptual and legal representation, which is in fact the focus of our discussion. Thus, it must be stressed that the divergences and convergences we propose to trace are limited to representations within legal orders, and do not extend to the underlying history of state power per se. The analysis confines itself to explaining the different techniques of conceptualization employed at different times and in different national contexts in relation to the identification and execution of public tasks understood as specifically belonging to the administrative sphere. Our aim here is simply to define the different juridical articulations within which the institutional enterprises definable as states emerged historically. A second premise, which is of a chronological nature, flows from the first. The conscious emergence of a power, tasks, or law considered as ‘administrative’ is a relatively recent phenomenon, something reflected in the historical development of languages, lexicons, and concepts. In France, for example, the terms administration publique and bureaucratie did not become widely used before 1750, and droit administratif did not make its first appearance until the early years of the nineteenth century. Moreover, Verwaltungsrecht in Germany, or administrative law in the English-speaking world, did not appear until well into the nineteenth century (and in the English case arguably only came into wide usage in the twentieth). We must therefore be aware that the question of administrative power or administrative law has its own history, which is not necessarily coterminous with history of forms of public authority. Rather, the emergence of a specifically ‘administrative’ power or law is intrinsically a modern phenomenon, dating back no more than 200 years or so. Thus, the questions this chapter seeks to answer only make sense for the past two centuries: for the nineteenth century, in which an identifiably ‘administrative’ space, as well as corresponding understandings of ‘administrative’ power and law, emerged; and for the twentieth century, in which the vast expansion of ‘administrative’ personnel, responsibilities, organizations, and establishments (including, perhaps most importantly, the diffusion of public services and of social administration) became an inescapable feature of modern governance. It is precisely in this time span that the divergences and convergences between the different paths of state-formation become noticeable and measurable.

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Silvia Suteu

This chapter aims to provide initial answers to the basic question of whether and how participation in constitution-making delivers for women. The chapter proceeds by first outlining the contours of the debate surrounding popular participation in constitution-making, identifying the benefits and potential pitfalls such participation may yield. The chapter then looks at three instances of popular involvement in constitutional change: the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, the 2012-14 Irish Constitutional Convention and the 2011-14 Tunisian constitution-making experience, analysing the level and nature of women’s participation in all these processes. Subsequently, the chapter evaluates the successes and failures of participatory mechanisms such as referendums, constitutional conventions and public consultations in empowering women as equal participants, and their ability to ensure gender-sensitive deliberations. The chapter also raises questions as to whether participation is to be resorted to in all cases of constitutional reform and the propensity for it to be an obstacle to, rather than a vehicle for, gender equality.

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Mark Tushnet

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Tamas Gyorfi

The first chapter of the book has three main purposes. First, it defines what the New Constitutionalism is and documents how it has become the orthodox view in constitutional theory. In the terminology of the book, the New Constitutionalism refers to a particular institutional arrangement that comprises four tenets: (1) an entrenched and codified constitution; (2) a codified bill of rights; (3) constitutional judicial review with the power to strike down legislation; (4) the robust exercise of judicial review. However, the New Constitutionalism also refers to the view that the very idea of constitutionalism requires the aforementioned institutional arrangement. Second, the present chapter also addresses the question of why the New Constitutionalism has become the reigning paradigm of constitutional law and explores six possible explanations. Finally, Chapter One spells out the main methodological principles that underpin the book and provides the reader with an outline of the argument.
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Edited by Thierry Delpeuch and Jacqueline E. Ross