Institute of Political Science


Presentation of the Yearbook of Federalism 2022 - in cooperation with the State Representation of Baden-Württemberg in Berlin

On 16 November 2022, the ECRF, together with the Representation of the State of Baden-Württemberg to the Federation in Berlin, presented the Yearbook of Federalism 2022 - after a two-year break due to the pandemic, finally again in the context of a live event.

The presentation began with a welcome to the guests by the Head of Service of the Representation, Mr. Andreas Schulze, and a greeting from Ms. Muhterem Aras, President of the State Parliament of Baden-Württemberg, who had connected virtually from Stuttgart for the event. After she presented the range of topics of this year's Yearbook and gave a basic introduction to one of the main topics - the "Conference on the Future of Europe" - Prof. Dr. Gabriele Abels, Spokesperson of the Executive Board of the ECRF, discussed with Ms. Aras and Dr. Mark Speich, State Secretary for Federal and European Affairs, International Affairs and Media of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and Representative of the State to the Federation, about their experiences from the conference, in which they had actively participated as part of the delegation of the European Committee of the Regions. The discussion also addressed the question of how to ensure a stronger involvement of citizens and regions in political processes at the European level and what the concrete follow-up should look like. Both discussants saw the Member States and the Council as being primarily responsible for this. The audience also participated actively in the discussion with questions and comments.

The ECRF would like to thank Ms. Aras and Dr. Speich for the excellent hybrid discussion, all participants and especially the Representation of Baden-Württemberg to the Federation for the successful event.


Event notice: Conference "How much federalism can a pandemic take? Dealing with the coronavirus and its consequences" (01./02.12.2022)

Federalism has come under pressure in the Covid 19 pandemic. Everywhere, the "patchwork" of regulation in dealing with the pandemic was criticised. What was allowed in one federal state was forbidden in another. At the same time, the federal states certainly switched back and forth between "Team Vorsicht" (Team Caution) and "Team Freiheit" (Team Freedom). The abbreviation MPK was previously familiar only to insiders, but since then it has become the talk of the town. For the eye was always fixed on the conferences of the Minister Presidents with the then Chancellor.
It is not the first time that the structures of German federalism have come under criticism in times of crisis. The need for reforms to improve the federal state's ability to act was also discussed during security policy crises (for example, in the aftermath of terrorist attacks). In the Covid 19 pandemic, personal concern about state regulation was clearly felt, not least in view of the unprecedented depth of encroachment on citizens' civil liberties.
Against the backdrop of the debates, the question arises as to the capacity to act and the need for reform of federalism in crises, specifically in the pandemic. How can the handling of the coronavirus and its consequences be explained? How efficient were the federal structures in Germany - not least in comparison with other states? Are unitary systems more capable of acting in crises? Are democratic states possibly even too slow in their decision-making processes in crises? What need is there for reform of German federalism and how can it be implemented?

These questions will be discussed at a multidisciplinary symposium organised by the ECRF and the Akademie für Politische Bildung (Scholarship - Education - Public Services) in Tutzing.
You can find the program here. Sign up for the conference with this form.


New publication: Yearbook of Federalism 2022

The 23rd edition of the Yearbook of Federalism has been published!
The Yearbook is designed as a compendium that offers readers an up-to-date overview of various aspects of federal and regional structure and policy in 34 contributions.
In addition to German federalism, current research topics, regional cooperation, EU/European integration and state reports, two topics are the focus this year: The English-language section "Conference on the Future of Europe" deals with the question of how individual member states and their regions have participated in this unique discussion process with citizen participation. On the other hand, "70 Years of Baden-Württemberg" looks at topics that were less central in the official commemorative events.

2022, 516 pages, hard cover, 104,– €
ISBN 978-3-7560-0422-5 
E-Book 978-3-7489-3673-2 

The Yearbook can be purchased here.


Presentation of the "Yearbook of Federalism 2022"

After two years of hiatus due to the pandemic, the official presentation of the "Yearbook of Federalism 2022" will again take place at the State Representation of Baden-Württemberg in Berlin. This year's main topics of the Yearbook are "The Conference on the Future of Europe - National and Regional Participation" and "70 Years of Baden-Württemberg".

We are pleased to welcome Mrs. Muhterem Aras; President of the State Parliament of Baden-Württemberg, and Mr. Mark Speich; State Secretary for Federal and European Affairs, International Affairs and Media of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, Representative of the State to the Federation, for a discussion on "The Conference on the Future of Europe from the Perspective of the Regions - Review and Outlook".

Further information about the event and the possibility to register can be found here.


We have moved!

The ECRF can now be found at Haußerstraße 43, 72076 Tübingen.


New release: Yearbook of Federalism 2021

Vol. 22

In 2021, ECFF again presents a comprehensive compendium on federalism in Germany and Europe. This year's main topic is "Management of the Corona Pandemic in Federal and Quasi-Federal States".

Further information and ordering options can be found here.


New release: Occasional Paper Nr. 43

Gabriele Abels (editor): From Takers to Shapers? Challenges for Regions in a Dynamic EU Polity

Summary: Since the 1990s the role of regions in the EU multi-level polity is under construction and has changed in many ways. The currently ongoing Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE) provides another window of opportunity for regions to shape the dynamic EU polity.

The three articles put this timely development in a historical perspective by discussing parallels to previous treaty reforms, by analyzing the manifold activities of the Committee of the Regions (CoR) in relation to the CoFoE, and by discussing the role of regional parliaments and their potential contribution to the democratic legitimacy of the EU.

Free E-Book: Abels: From Takers to Shapers?