The Practice of Constitutional Development

The Practice of Constitutional Development : Vincent Ostrom's Quest to Understand Human Affairs

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This edited collection further expands our knowledge about what comprises a successful constitution in both theory and application. Building on the research and analysis of Vincent Ostrom, who as one of America's leading scholars on constitutions has spent a lifetime writing about constitutions in America and overseas. Each essay shows how particular countries, governments, and organizations devise constitutions to reflect their visions of governance and sets of rules for their leaders. On a higher theoretical level, the contributors emphasize the importance of choosing the rules of the political game in order to determine the nature of the game itself. Extending Ostrom's intellectual quest to solve constitutional dilemmas, the scholars gathered here discuss a wide variety of issues, ranging from the problems of water scarcity and local public economies in Africa to the prospect of a new political order in the European North.

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  • Hardback | 268 pages
  • 154.94 x 231.14 x 25.4mm | 521.63g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MDUnited States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations, black & white line drawings, black & white tables, figures
  • 0739126318
  • 9780739126318

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Author Information

Barbara Allen is professor, former chair of the Department of Political Science, and former Director of Women's Studies at Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota. Filippo Sabetti is professor of political science at McGill University. Mark Sproule-Jones is V.K. Copps Professor of political science at McMaster University in Canada.

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Review quote

Twelve papers, originally presented at a conference held in honor of Vincent Ostrom at Indiana University in June 2006, explore Ostrom's intellectual contributions to the study of politics and community living. Journal of Economic Literature, December 2009 (Vol. 47, no. 4) Vincent Ostrom repeatedly provides the intellectual foundation and experience-based judgment to give governance practiioners useful insights on a range of institutional and economic concerns, from water allocation to the organization of municipal services. As someone who works at the brushfire level, Ostrom's work forces me to stand back and ask the basic questions identified within this work when approaching an institution's capacity and performance -- Otto Doering, Professor of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University

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