This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Are Referendums A Sensible Mechanism For Making Decisions In A Representative Democracy? University Of Reading Essay

1572 words - 7 pages

Are referendums a sensible mechanism for making decisions in a representative democracy?
A referendum is a general vote by the electorate on a single political question which has been referred to them for a direct decision . In contrast, a representative democracy is where citizens within a country elect representatives to make decisions on behalf of them in the form of mp’s as is the case in the UK. Although the UK occasionally incorporates referendums, it has only held 11 national referendums since 1973 and thus largely operates as a representative democracy whereby the passage of legislation requires approval from parliament. However, the current electoral system arguably alienates specific voters which is a common feature of majoritarian systems and therefore citizens don’t feel as empowered in policy making and so many have advocated further referendum use whilst acknowledging that elected officials are indispensable in a representative democracy. ( Representative government in modern europe,2011)
It could be argued that referendums are suitable when it pertains to making decisions in a representative democracy. Although the 2015 general election recorded the highest voter turnout since 1997, there is a growing disparity between the proportion of older and younger voters as younger voters are less likely to cast a vote which is a testament to the declining engagement with the political process and this has led to calls for reform and thus a subsequent transition to more frequent referendum use. (The guardian,2016) This trend is also reflected in Germany whereby 51% under age 30 support direct democracy. (public opinion and direct democracy,2011) In addition, since 1945, Switzerland has held 416 referendums at a national and regional level and still remains a wealthy country with a stable government despite not being a member of the Eu and thus not surrendering sovereignty to representative institutions within the Eu so implementing referendums at a national level will not necessarily lead to instability within the political system. (representative government in modern Europe 2011)
Similarly, referendums might be necessary in a modern democracy which places greater precedence on a representative form of government due to the current state of the electoral system whereby citizens are less engaged as well as the occurrence of wasted wasted votes which is prevalent in majoritarian systems and was evident in 2015 general election whereby UKIP gained 3.8 million votes however only won one seat. (the politics of direct democracy,2002) Therefore the views conveyed by elected officials do not accurately reflect public opinion due to the disparity in the vote to seat ratio whereas referendums enhance the democratic process and is therefore a symbolic reminder that democratic authority ultimately resides with its citizens who democratically elect its leaders. (parliament,2010)As a result, questions that concern national sovereignty as well as social...

Find Another Essay On are referendums a sensible mechanism for making decisions in a representative democracy? - university of reading - essay

Examining the Ways a Pressure Group Contributes to Representative Democracy

826 words - 3 pages Examining the Ways a Pressure Group Contributes to Representative Democracy In a representative democracy, citizens elect representatives to make decisions for them. In doing this, citizens hand over the responsibility for making decisions to someone else. In Britian voters elect members of parliament’s (MPs) to represent them every four to five years and this makes the representatives in some way accountable to the

Life of a Sales Representative Essay

1179 words - 5 pages salesperson approaches selling products their own way from prior experiences. But some salespeople are more respectable and friendly than others. According to Online Business Advisor (2014), “poor salespeople have a short-term mentality looking for quick cash, lack organization or have poor management skills.” The poor salespeople also tend to let stress build and take the best of them resulting in poor customer experience. This poor customer

Making a Plausible Case for Participatory Democracy Under Modern Conditions

3221 words - 13 pages century conception of a democratic method as that institutional arrangement whereby political decisions are made in order to realise the common good. On in which the people themselves decide issues through the election of individuals who are to assemble and carry out the ‘will of the people’. Both the 18th century idea and our modern practices of democracy then do call for participation, but only at a certain level. It is

Cocoa Production in Ghana: A Mechanism for Biodiversity Conservation

1653 words - 7 pages mechanism and presents recommendations to research gaps related to agroforestry. Background According to Richard Asare, “The West African sub region is host to the world’s main cocoa producing countries, including Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Cameroon and Nigeria” . Through progressive Conversion of forests into cocoa fields, these countries are undergoing major deforestation . Ghana in particular, underwent a substantial amount of biodiversity loss due to

How far does situation ethics give a practical and modern way for making moral decisions - Religious Studies Ethics - Essay

559 words - 3 pages How far does situation ethics give a practical and modern way for making moral decisions. Situation ethics is a flexible theory that can be applied and adapted to every situation. For example, homosexual relationships are seen as wrong by most religious believers and by some atheists. However, situation ethics gives a different approach to homosexual relationships; as long as the relationship is based on love and not lust it is acceptable

You are a senior manager for a low budget airline (Ryanair, Easyjet). - University - Essay

3103 words - 13 pages You are a senior manager for a low budget airline (Ryanair, Easyjet). How can ensure that your staff is able to meet the needs of your customers, without incurring any harm to themselves in terms of burn out and sickness? Customer satisfaction is one of the key determinants of business success because the business operates for customers with their own hidden intents of profits (Pearlson et al., 2016). It means the businesses or the companies

Kinship As A Mechanism For Social Integrating

951 words - 4 pages Yanomamo's idealistic form of marriage between cross cousins and their practice of polygamy. Due to this brothers (agnates), are always in direct competition for wives making their relationships sometimes awkward and hostile. Thus an affine (brother in law), who a man is not in competition with can certainly grow closer over time than one's own agnate. The examples of fissioning and the ax fight are in direct contradiction with kinship always

Death of a Salesman Pre- Reading In-Class Essay: Homes

1019 words - 5 pages stairs lead to the upper floor on which sits my room which, in order to fulfil my instinctual urge to gain a true sense of possession over my belongings I decorate with great care. Of course said decorations, due to my dislike for posters and bright colours, is limited mainly to wooden shelves lined with books as well as a double bunk bed whose sheets are plastered in Asian calligraphy. Moreover, I am not alone when it comes to such behaviour as

The advantages and disadvantages of representative democracy

886 words - 4 pages majority of the people would argue that we are all equal and we should all have an equal say in all matters. After all, democracy is defined as "A form of government in which political power is exercised by the citizens".Another argument for Representative democracy is that it is very practical and quick. Some people think that other kinds of democracy are more efficient like direct democracy because the whole country would vote on every issue and it

Ethics in making decisions. Speaks of managing

661 words - 3 pages Written Assignment #2Challenger Case #1There are so many instances in life where ethics play a major role in decisions that we, as humans, make. Ethical decision making processes take place mostly when conclusions are reached that directly effect people, but what are ethics? The Random House-Webster¹s Dictionary of Modern English defines ethics as: The branch of philosophy dealing with values relating to human conduct, with respect to the

What instruments of direct democracy exist in contemporary democracies? Do they constitute meaningful alternatives to representative democracy?

4739 words - 19 pages referendums by a government. Comment by Kayla L.: What are direct democracy instruments? It might be worth noting explicitly in your introduction what kinds of instruments you’ll be detailing. It follows that theNotably, people have an enhanced influence on the decision making process when they get the opportunity to be directly involved. This is particularly true in the process of choosing representatives and thus controlling the executive. For

Similar Essays

Are There Other Alternatives To University That Are More Sensible?

2056 words - 8 pages sway people to thinking going to university is the only way to progress but are there better less cost effective options available. Main Body Facts and information: An article in the Guardian shows that a growing number of universities plan to charge £9,000 which is the maximum possible and minimum of £6,000 per year which means for many young people a bare minimum debt of £18,000. This debt could be hard to pay off unless you learn skills

Are Humans Rational Individuals Capable Of Making Their Own Decisions? Critical Ideas Of Contemporary Social And Political Theory Essay

1348 words - 6 pages imposed that relatively few have dared to stray from these restraints, again for fears of segregation or - in many cases - belligerent responses from individuals within the society. Gramsci suggests individuals are further limited by linguistics within in a culturally hegemonic society. As language is developed throughout history via social interactions, and social interactions are formed relative to the dominant ideology of the time, even the

How Representative Are Social Media Datasets Of The True Population: A Case For London

1491 words - 6 pages creation of such a population register for Greater London at borough and electoral regions levels, the methods used to assess its representative capability, and finally present preliminary results of this analysis with a discussion as to its potential strengths and weaknesses. Proving successful, the methodology proposed will be applied to further countries, as yet not included in the WND. Figure 1: Coverage of the World Names Database

The Question Of A Representative Democracy: Where Should The Power Go

1200 words - 5 pages The Founders were confronted with a multitude of concerns in the establishment of an American democracy, a fundamental one being how to best apportion power in order to avoid the rule of a “tyrant” individual person or group. The Founders answered this issues with conflicting ideals, and through their experiences in the Revolutionary War and the Articles of Confederation, arrived at a compromise, ratifying the U.S. Constitution The manner in