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Studying Semi-Presidentialism: A Systematic Review of Research Directions and Future Challenges
Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Political Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1720-6481
Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Political Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6594-5804
2016 (English)In: IPSA 24th World Congress of Political Science, 2016Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Since the early 2000s, studies of semi-presidentialism have come to gradually consolidate into a sub-field of research in its own right. With Elgie’s (1999) definition there are currently more than 50 countries around the world with semi-presidential constitutions. By a systematic recap of the main achievements and shortcomings in the field of semi-presidentialism, our purpose of this paper is to identify and suggest fruitful ways to go from here in advancing the research on semi-presidentialism. First, we aim to map the general lines and trends of semi-presidential studies with regards to theoretical foundations, main focus and method approaches. Second, we aim to identify current research gaps and to provide some recommendations for future studies. We have used a review strategy including a general screening of 327 publications covering the period 1970-2015. Out of this sample we have conducted a close reading of 65 selected publications. Our findings suggest that the inconsistent use of regime type classifications and deviating case samples have affected negatively the possibilities for generalizations, but also that the field is gradually moving away from the long-standing debate about how to define semi-presidentialism. Our study also shows a predominance of single cases studies, as well as a regional bias in favor of European and especially post-communist cases of semi-presidentialism. In terms of gaps, we suggest more studies beyond Europe, and we believe that the field would benefit from broadening the dominant theoretical frames to include perspectives from e.g. historical and normative New Institutionalism. In addition, we argue in favor of more studies on public administration and the bureaucracy relevant to the functioning of semi-presidential government.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
National Category
Political Science
Research subject
Intercultural Studies, Semipresidentialism och regeringskapacitet i transitionsländer
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-22817OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-22817DiVA: diva2:954217
IPSA World Congress 2016, July 23-28, Poznan, Poland
Swedish Research Council, 2014-1260
Available from: 2016-08-21 Created: 2016-08-21 Last updated: 2016-08-24Bibliographically approved

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