New and Notable Titles.


A selection of recent publications relating to parliamentary studies prepared with the assistance of the Library of Parliament (June 2019--September 2019)

"Where you sit and where you stand--Parliaments get facelifts; but it is politics that really needs one." Economist 432 (9153), July 27, 2019: 51-2.

* Renovations give parliamentarians an opportunity to shore up democracy. Will they take it?

Barry, Nicholas, Miragliotta, Narelle, Nwokora, Zim. "The dynamics of constitutional conventions in Westminster democracies." Parliamentary Affairs 72 (3), July 2019: 664-83.

* Constitutional conventions are fundamental to the operation of Westminster democracies. However, despite their political significance, there have been few attempts to yse and theorise their internal dynamics.

Lagasse, Philippe. "The Crown and government formation: Conventions, practices, customs, and norms." Constitutional Forum constitutionnel 28 (3), 2019:1-17.

* The Crown's role in government formation is poorly understood in Canada... The author begins the article with a discussion of the difference between constitutional convention, practice, custom, and norms. He then examines how the Crown's role in government formation are guided by these four types of rules. The author concludes by recommending ways that vice-regal offices can better explain their functions and avoid confusion and controversy about their powers and personal discretion.

Martin, Shane, Whitaker, Richard. "Beyond committees: parliamentary oversight of coalition government in Britain." West European Politics 42 (7), November 2019:1464-86.

* A legislature's ability to engage in oversight of the executive is believed to derive largely from its committee system...legislatures conventionally considered weak due to the lack of strong committees may nevertheless play an important oversight role through other parliamentary devices, including helping to police the implementation of coalition agreements.

Marland, Alex. "Fewer politicians and smaller assemblies: How party elites rationalise reducing the number of seats in a legislature--Lessons from Canada." The Journal of Legislative Studies 25 (2), June 2019: 149-68.

* Scholars are unable to rationalise the number of elected representatives in legislative assemblies. This study offers some insights into the political arithmetic by examining the rare event of reducing seats in a legislature. It is hypothesised that a policy of cutting electoral districts occurs...

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