Special Seminar Series:  The Politics of Federalism


Associate Professor, Department of Political Science

October 16, afterwards the first Monday of the month:  November 6, December 4, February 5, March 5, and April 2, from 2 - 4 pm.

The Center for European Studies at Rutgers University will offer a special series of six seminars as a part of the Academic Partnership Program with Kazan State University, Russia entitled Building Democracy in Multi-Ethnic Societies. The Center is inviting applications from Rutgers University faculty and graduate students who feel that participation in the seminar series will benefit their scholarship and teaching.  There is a stipend of $500 for participation in the full year of six seminars or $250 for participation in a half year of three seminars.


The seminar series will investigate various aspects of federalism.  We begin by exploring the normative and functional justifications for federalism.  We then examine the formation and dissolution of federal systems, asking why they come together, what can hold them together, and why they sometimes collapse.  We then look at the role of federal systems in mediating (or in some cases perhaps exacerbating) ethnic conflict.  Next, we explore the political economy of federalism, assessing the impact of federal arrangements on the macro-economy. Finally, we turn to the relationship between federalism and democracy, asking how federal arrangements affect the process of democratization and the nature of democracy that emerges in federal systems.  The approach will be comparative, relying on examples from federal systems the world over.


  1. Why Federalism

  2. Coming together

  3. Falling apart

  4. Federalism and Ethnic Conflict

  5. The Political Economy of Federalism

  6. Federalism and democracy