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Direct Democracy: Designing a Living Constitution

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  • Bruno S. Frey
  • Alois Stutzer

Abstract

A crucial aspect of constitutional design is the provision of rules on how a constitution is to be amended. If procedures for constitutional amendment are very restrictive, changes will take place outside the constitution. These changes are likely to be against the citizens? interests and their ability to influence the political process. We argue that the development of the constitution must be based on the rule of law. We propose direct democratic rights that allow citizens to participate in the amendment process. The direct democratic process of institutional change is theoretically and empirically analyzed. A number of counter arguments and issues for a gradual introduction are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2003. "Direct Democracy: Designing a Living Constitution," CREMA Working Paper Series 2003-05, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
  • Handle: RePEc:cra:wpaper:2003-05
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Stefan Voigt, 2011. "Positive constitutional economics II—a survey of recent developments," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 146(1), pages 205-256, January.
    2. Roger Congleton, 2007. "Informational limits to democratic public policy: The jury theorem, yardstick competition, and ignorance," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 132(3), pages 333-352, September.
    3. Matthias Benz, 2006. "Was kann die Corporate Governance in der Schweiz von der Public Governance lernen?," IEW - Working Papers 305, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    4. Benno Torgler & Jan Werner, 2005. "Fiscal Autonomy and Tax Morale: Evidence from Germany," CREMA Working Paper Series 2005-07, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    5. Bruno S. Frey & Simon Luechinger & Alois Stutzer, 2007. "Calculating Tragedy: Assessing The Costs Of Terrorism," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(1), pages 1-24, February.
    6. Alois Stutzer & Lukas Kienast, 2005. "Demokratische Beteiligung und Staatsausgaben: Die Auswirkungen des Frauenstimmrechts," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 141(IV), pages 617-650, December.
    7. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, "undated". "Direct Democracy: Designing a Living Constitution," IEW - Working Papers 167, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    8. Stutzer Alois & Frey Bruno S., 2006. "Making International Organizations More Democratic," Review of Law & Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 1(3), pages 305-330, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    collective decision-making; constitutional design; constitutional economics; direct democracy;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations

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