Advertisement

Testing the “Veil of Ignorance” Hypothesis in Constitutional Choice: Evidence from the German Grundgesetz

  • Agnes StraußEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Studies in Public Choice book series (SIPC, volume 32)

Abstract

The German constitution gives only mixed evidence to support the three propositions formulated by the Veil of Ignorance Project. The content analysis of the Grundgesetz reveals a high share of authority-based power relations in the constitutional text and a majority of over 97% positive power relations. The complexity of the drafting process as well as the high number of involved veto players leads to the problem that the contribution of uncertainty on the content of the constitution may not be traceable only reviewing the constitutional text.

Keywords

Power Relation Median Voter Constitutional Rule Veto Player Nazi Regime 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

The author thanks Nora El-Bialy, Julian Boakye-Nyarko, David Börn, Matthias Dauner, Prof. Thomas Eger, Asmaa Ezzat, Patricia Frohberg, Jerg Gutmann, Louis Imbeau, Jun.-Prof. Patrick Leyens, Marwa Mamdouh, Janina Satzer, Prof. Stefan Voigt and Nina Ziesemer for valuable discussions and comments.

References

  1. Bauer-Kirsch A (2005) Herrenchiemsee: der Verfassungskonvent von Herrenchiemsee-Wegbereiter des Parlamentarischen Rates. Inaugural-Dissertation zur Erlangung der Doktorwürde der Rheinischen Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität zu Bonn. http://hss.ulb.uni-bonn.de/diss_online
  2. Bommarius C (2009) Das Grundgesetz. Eine Biographie, 1st edn. Rowohlt, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  3. Brennan G, Buchanan JM (1985) The reason of rules. In: Constitutional political economy, 1st edn. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  4. Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (2012) Grundgesetz und Parlamentarischer Rat. http://www.bpb.de/themen/CN4PV2,0,Grundgesetz_und_Parlamentarischer_Rat.html. Accessed 17 Jan 2012
  5. Elkins Z, Ginsburg T, Melton J (2008) Baghdad, Tokyo, Kabul… constitution making in occupied states. William Mary Law Rev 49(4):1139–1178Google Scholar
  6. Elster J (1995) Forces and mechanisms in the constitution-making process. Duke Law J 45(2):364–396CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Feldkamp MF, Risse H (2009) Der Parlamentarische Rat. 1948–1949: Akten und Protokolle. In: Der Parlamentarische Rat. 1948–1949: Akten und Protokolle (ed) Deutscher Bundestag. Boldt im Oldenbourg-Verl, MünchenGoogle Scholar
  8. Frotscher W, Pieroth B (2010) Verfassungsgeschichte, 9th edn. Beck, MünchenGoogle Scholar
  9. Imbeau LM, Jacob S (2015) Measuring the opacity of the ‘veil of ignorance’ in constitutions: theory, method and some results. In: Imbeau LM, Jacob S (eds) Behind a veil of ignorance? Power and uncertainty in constitutional designGoogle Scholar
  10. Markovitz I (2007) Constitution making after National Catastrophes: Germany in 1949 and 1990. William Mary Law Rev 49:1307Google Scholar
  11. Möllers C (2009) Das Grundgesetz. Geschichte und Inhalt. München, BeckGoogle Scholar
  12. Niclauss K (1998) Der Weg zum Grundgesetz. Demokratiegründung in Westdeutschland 1945–1949. F. Schöningh, PaderbornGoogle Scholar
  13. Raudla R (2010) Explaining constitution-makers’ preferences: the cases of Estonia and the United States. Const Polit Econ 21(3):249–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Spevack E (2001) Allied control and German freedom. American political and ideological influences on the framing of the West German Grundgesetz. Piscataway, MünsterGoogle Scholar
  15. Stiftung Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (2012) Beobachtungen - Der Parlamentarische Rat 1948/49. http://www.parlamentarischerrat.de/impressum_864.html. Accessed 17 Jan 2012
  16. Vermeule A (2001) Veil of ignorance rules in constitutional law. Yale Law J 111(2):399–433CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Law and EconomicsUniversity of HamburgHamburgGermany

Personalised recommendations