Jean Monnet Center at NYU School of Law


Author: Christoph Moellers

Title: Steps to a Tripartite Theory of Multi-level-Government


This paper takes the traditional notion of separated powers and tries to modernize it by developing a legitimacy-based model for the legislative, executive and judicial functions. The starting point of this model is the idea of autonomy as the central element for every legal order that claims legitimacy. The institutional implications of the distinction between individual and collective self-determination will help to develop certain criteria for the organizational design of legitimate law making procedures. In this model the idea of separated powers serves to organize the perpetuate conflict between individual and collective self-determination, both equally accepted by constitutional orders. These criteria can be comparatively applied to classical problems of separated powers - delegation, constitutional adjudication - as well as to problems of multi level-legal systems.

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