16 Pages Posted: 21 Dec 1998
Date Written: December 1998
The paper discusses both the normative and the positive approach towards the economic analysis of constitutional law. With regard to the normative branch, Buchanan's approach is shortly presented and evaluated. With regard to the positive branch, it is differentiated between research which is interested in explaining the choice of constitutional rules on the one hand and research which is interested in explaining the outcomes that (alternative) constitutional rules bring about on the other. Concerning the first research direction, a distinction between explicit and implicit constitutional change is proposed. Concerning the second direction, concepts such as the separation of powers, unicameral vs. bicameral systems and direct-democratic institutions are discussed. The paper closes with a proposal to complement the two existing branches with an "art of constitutional political economy" which is conjectured to make the economic analysis of constitutional law more relevant in real world processes of constitutional choice.
JEL Classification: K0
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation