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The Federal VisionLegitimacy and Levels of Governance in the United States and the European Union$
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Kalypso Nicolaidis and Robert Howse

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199245000

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199245002.001.0001

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Conclusion: The Federal Vision Beyond the Federal State

Conclusion: The Federal Vision Beyond the Federal State

(p.439) Conclusion: The Federal Vision Beyond the Federal State
The Federal Vision

Kalypso Nicolaidis

Oxford University Press

Fleshes out some of the common horizontal themes emerging from the book, and presents the broad elements of federal vision that have been discussed. The vision calls for five concurrent shifts in understanding what matters about federal contracts, each central to fashioning a ‘federal’ response to the challenge of legitimacy. In particular, it is suggested how the notion of ‘subsidiarity’ as commonly understood—that political decisions should be made and policies conducted at the lowest, or most appropriate, level—should be fine‐tuned, reinterpreted, or even relabelled. The five shifts that are discussed in the different sections of the conclusion are: from allocative outcomes to the process of change—legitimacy and flexibility; from distributed to shared competences—networked cooperation, proportionality, and changing forms of governance; from separation of powers to power checks—governance structures, procedural subsidiarity, and the safeguards of federalism; from power containment to empowerment—proactive subsidiarity, managed competition, and mutuality; and from multi‐level (hierarchical) to multi‐centred governance and horizontal subsidiarity. The concluding section looks towards a model of global subsidiarity.

Keywords:   allocative outcomes, distributed competences, empowerment, federal contracts, federal vision, federalism, flexibility, global subsidiarity, governance, governance structures, hierarchical governance, horizontal subsidiarity, legitimacy, managed competition, multi‐centred governance, multi‐level governance, mutuality, networked cooperation, power checks, power containment, proactive subsidiarity, procedural subsidiarity, proportionality, separation of powers, Subsidiarity

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