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Vital DemocracyA Theory of Democracy in Action$
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Frank Hendriks

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572786

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572786.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 29 November 2021

Mixing Democracy

Mixing Democracy

Lessons from around the World

(p.135) 7 Mixing Democracy
Vital Democracy

Frank Hendriks (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Referring to the empirical exploration in the previous chapters, it is concluded in this chapter that real democracy – wherever it is practised with some level of success – is always hybrid democracy, resulting from a process of push and pull between competing models of democracy. Consensus democracy may be most prominent in some countries, and pendulum democracy in others, but this never occurs in an exclusive or uncontested way. A vital democracy, it is argued here, is a democracy that combines the elementary forms of democracy in a way that is both creative and contingent and, thus, manages to unite effectiveness with legitimacy: the core principles of good governance. A democratic hybrid is creative if it succeeds in making the most of the advantages of the combined models and in compensating their disadvantages as much as possible. It is contingent if the coexistence of models is sensitive to the situational and cultural context in which democracy must gain effectiveness and legitimacy.

Keywords:   practice, feedback, coexistence, checks and balances, hybrid democracy, good governance, legitimacy, effectiveness, elective affinity, contingency, contextualism

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