Bras. Political Sci. Rev.. 01/Sep/2015;9(3):164-72.

Electoral Systems and Judicial Review in Developing Countries

Ernani Carvalho, Leon Victor de Queiroz Barbosa

DOI: 10.1590/1981-38212015000300024

The interest regarding the effects a strong Judiciary may have on political systems has a long history. Tocqueville in his seminal work Democracy in America had already warned us of such phenomenon centuries ago. Very recently, political science as a discipline has dealt with the global phenomenon of the expansion of Judiciary Power. This process presents itself through various levels of social relations up until the political level. In the specific field of politics, we may see the growing inclusion of the Judiciary as an important, and often decisive, actor in decision-making processes.

The purpose of this book is to study the determinants in the constitutional empowerment (or lack thereof) of the judiciary in young democracies in developing countries, examining the conditions through which the judiciary was granted the important legal mechanism of judicial review. The book also attempts to analyze policies maintaining a de facto independence from the courts in newly established democracies in developing countries. The authors seek answers by analyzing the interaction between government, opposition, and the judiciary across different contexts of domestic institutions and political conditions. Subsequently, the authors empirically test their answers with statistical tests and, in the end, select sets and compare them in order to illustrate the underlying causal dynamics of adopting institutional judicial review (de jure) and judicial independence in practice (de facto) within the democracies of developing countries.


Electoral Systems and Judicial Review in Developing Countries