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Delegation and Accountability in Parliamentary Democracies$
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Kaare Strøm, Wolfgang C. Müller, and Torbjörn Bergman

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780198297840

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2005

DOI: 10.1093/019829784X.001.0001

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Belgium: Delegation and Accountability under Partitocratic Rule

Belgium: Delegation and Accountability under Partitocratic Rule

(p.253) 6 Belgium: Delegation and Accountability under Partitocratic Rule
Delegation and Accountability in Parliamentary Democracies

Lieven De Winter

Patrick Dumont

Oxford University Press

Reviews the mechanisms of delegation and accountability in post-war Belgium prior to the major reforms of the 1990s and the subsequent reforms. Discusses how political parties dominate these processes and reduce many actors in the parliamentary chain of delegation (MPs, ministers, civil servants) to mere party agents. Partitocracy is unavoidable and even functional for political system stability in Belgium, but it does come at the cost of undermining political legitimacy and governability.

Keywords:   coalition maintenance mechanisms, electoral responsiveness, electoral rules, federalism, linguistic symmetry, monitoring, neo-corporatism, partitocracy, pillarization, political parties

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