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In and around the Ballot Box: Recent Developments in Democratic Governance and International Law Put into Context

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Chapter Summary

The latest developments in democratic practice and thinking worldwide are situated in the broader context of international law, constitutionalism and political theory. This chapter examines how the developments relate to international law. To this end, the contemporary meaning of the single elements of the "periodic, fair and free elections"(PFF) formula is analysed as international constraints on the design and function of national political processes and institutions. To ensure that a discussion of democracy's values and rules remains grounded, attention is given to the role of intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) in constructing the legal framework of democracy in national political systems. The rule of law is another sine qua non for the existence of democracy and human rights. Among the UN's founders were 'federalists' in whose idealistic conception the UN was a halfway house to a quasi-state organization of the world community.

Keywords: democratic governance; federalists; intergovernmental organizations (IGOs); international law; periodic, fair and free elections (PFF); political theory



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