Key Concepts in Governance provides a clear introduction to the technical concepts and policies of contemporary governance through short definitional essays. Each entry features a snapshot definition of the concept, a contextualization of the concept, an overview of relevant debates, and a guide to further reading. The book also includes a substantial introductory chapter which gives an overview of governance studies as a whole, orientating and guiding the reader around the issues that the concepts address.
Representative democracy is a type of democracy in which the citizens of the state exercise their popular sovereignty through legitimately elected representatives. In a representative democracy, the citizens choose their representatives by voting in elections. Typically the chosen representatives then congregate in a legislative assembly where they debate policy and determine legislation. Such representative democracy is often contrasted with more direct or participatory forms of democracy in which citizens play an active role in the decision-making process.
The classical theory of representative democracy suggests that the representatives should act in accordance with the will or interests of the citizens. Yet, the representatives do not simply act as a proxy for the relevant citizens; rather, they have considerable discretion, and so can adopt the ...