A New Concept of European Federalism

30 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2010

Date Written: May 1, 2009


By opening markets the European union has been also an economic success. However, with respect to political organization the European Union is far less accomplished. The misguided concept of a successful Europe consists in mistaking integration for harmonization and homogenization. But the essence of Europe is its diversity. No steps have been taken to actively institutionalize competition between governmental units at all levels. The welfare of European citizens could be improved by promoting competition between new jurisdictions. A new type of federalism based on Functional, Overlapping Competing Jurisdictions FOCJ is here proposed. FOCJ form a federal system of governments emerging from below as a response to citizens' preferences. The lowest political units (communes) must be given the freedom to engage in forming FOCJ and must have the right to levy taxes to finance the public services they provide.

Keywords: federalism, constitutional economics, public choice, monopoly on territory

JEL Classification: H11, H4, H5

Suggested Citation

Frey, Bruno S., A New Concept of European Federalism (May 1, 2009). LEQS Paper No. 3, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1550908 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1550908

Bruno S. Frey (Contact Author)

CREMA ( email )

Südstrasse 11
Zurich, CH 8008
+41 44 380 00 78 (Phone)

University of Basel ( email )

Peter Merian-Weg 6
Basel, 4002

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