Why is the Spanish upper chamber so difficult to reform?

Jean Baptiste Harguindéguy*, Xavier Coller, Alistair Mark COLE

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

As in other countries, the Spanish upper chamber is facing harsh criticisms. It has failed to fulfil its constitutional task as a chamber of territorial representation. Notwithstanding a number of proposed reforms, the Senado has remained almost unchanged since its creation in 1978. So why is it so difficult to restructure this chamber? This research aims to explain the impasse of the reform of the Senate through evaluating three approaches. After stressing the qualities and defects of the legal inheritance and party bargaining frameworks, this article argues that the joint-decision trap perspective can help to understand the two-fold dynamic of institutional obstruction and incremental change that has affected the Spanish Senate for the last 20 years.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)530-547
Number of pages18
JournalParliamentary Affairs
Volume70
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law

User-Defined Keywords

  • Federalism
  • Reform
  • Senate
  • Spain
  • Upper chamber

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