Federalism and decentralisation are crucial mechanisms to share power and limit abuse of power. Since federalism and decentralisation combine shared action for specific purposes (e.g. defence, external relations, economic development) with autonomous action for other purposes (e.g. education, culture, health), such vertical power sharing is seen as being necessary to accommodate the multinational and multi-ethnic composition of most societies today. Federalism and decentralisation are not only seen as tools for power sharing, minority accommodation and inclusive state-building but also as a means for ensuring good governance, fostering democracy and contributing to development. It does therefore not come as a surprise that theories and practices of federalism and decentralisation are discussed and put to the test throughout the world.
Vertical power sharing is topical in both stable as well as conflict-ridden societies, and can play a decisive role in post-conflict situations. During the last three decades, federalism and decentralisation have become important instruments for conflict transformation and resolution. Especially in countries characterised by state failure or fragility and/or inter-group conflicts, federalism and decentralisation are more and more often used to guarantee autonomy to marginalised groups and to provide access to power at the centre. Peace treaties typically provide for some form of power sharing between the conflicting groups and their territories. Linking federalism and decentralisation to peace-making and transition processes has therefore become an important research field.
The Institute of Federalism and the Chair of Swiss and Comparative Constitutional Law of the University of Fribourg is pleased to announce the 28th Edition of the three-week Summer University on Federalism, Decentralisation and Conflict Resolution which will take place in Fribourg from 27 August until 12 September 2018.
More Information: http://www.unifr.ch/ius/federalism_en/capacity_building/summer_university