Local Government Systems: Grasping the Institutional Environment of Mayors

  • Hubert Heinelt
  • Nikos Hlepas
  • Sabine Kuhlmann
  • Pawel Swianiewicz
Part of the Governance and Public Management book series (GPM)


This chapter looks for main differences among local government systems as well as similarities among them. This has been done by the authors with the aim to grasp the institutional setting in which mayors have to act. The authors did it by updating and extending existing typologies and indices of local government systems. Nevertheless, an extension was first of all necessary with respect to vertical power relations because previous typologies considering them took neither the local government systems in Eastern and Central Europe nor the changes in the Western part of the continent into account. Furthermore, reflections about typologies are extended to the present one on public administration at the municipal level. All this have been underpinned by statistical data, the recent work on a ‘Local Autonomy Index’ (LAI; see Ladner et al. Measuring Autonomy in 39 Countries (1990–2014), Regional and Federal Studies, 26, 321–357, 2016) and information collected by the partners involved in the survey.


Typologies of local government systems types of municipal administration Local Autonomy Index 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hubert Heinelt
    • 1
  • Nikos Hlepas
    • 2
  • Sabine Kuhlmann
    • 3
  • Pawel Swianiewicz
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute of Political Science, Technische Universität DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany
  2. 2.Faculty of Political Science and Public Administration, Section of Administrative Science and Public LawNational and Kapodistrian University of AthensAthensGreece
  3. 3.Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaftliche Fakultät, Lehrstuhl für PolitikwissenschaftVerwaltung und Organisation, Universität PotsdamPotsdamGermany
  4. 4.Wydział Geografii i Studiów Regionalnych, Uniwersytet WarszawskiWarszawaPoland

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