Democratic Reform in New Brunswick is a comprehensive collection of research papers written initially for the New Brunswick Commission on Electoral Democracy. The essays provide detailed consideration of the many issues relating to democratic and electoral reform currently on the public policy agenda in Canada.
Topics covered include: electoral system change, gender and representational issues, questions relating to party democracy, the role of legislators, concerns around drawing electoral boundaries, fixed election dates, direct democracy, and political disengagement among young voters. All of the essays examine the implications of various reform proposals in these areas and most draw upon the experiences of other jurisdictions in addressing how they might play out in the Canadian context. Many chapters also draw specifically upon the New Brunswick experience in considering how democratic reform might impact upon the province's politics.
New Brunswick is Canada's only bilingual province with two vibrant linguistic communities and is in many ways a microcosm of the Canadian state. These readings provide insight into how issues related to democratic and electoral reform may play out on the national stage.
Chapter One: Democratic Reform in New Brunswick William Cross [Carleton University]
Chapter Two: The New Brunswick Commission on Legislative Democracy David McLaughlin [Former Deputy Minister, NB]
Chapter Three: Electoral Systems and Evaluations of Democracy Andre Blais and Peter Loewen [University of Montreal]
Chapter Four: The Effects of Differing Electoral Systems on Party Politics, Government Formation, and Voter Turnout Alan Siaroff [University of Lethbridge]
Chapter Five: The Government Life Cycle Andre Blais, Peter Loewen, and Maxime Ricard [University of Montreal]
Chapter Six: Electoral Systems and Representational Issues Joanna Everitt and Sonia Pitre [University of New Brunswick and Canadian Policy Research Networks]
Chapter Seven: Candidate Nomination in New Brunswick’s Political Parties William Cross and Lisa Young [Carleton University and University of Calgary]
Chapter Eight: Representation in New Brunswick: Capital and Constituency Concerns David C. Docherty [Wilfrid Laurier University]
Chapter Nine: Electoral Reform and Electoral Boundaries in New Brunswick Munroe Eagles [State University of New York, Buffalo]
Chapter Ten: Fixed-Date Elections under the Canadian Parliamentary System Don Desserud [University of New Brunswick]
Chapter Eleven: The Referendum Experience in New Brunswick Chedly Belkhodja [University of Moncton]
Chapter Twelve: Voter Participation in New Brunswick and the Political Disengagement of the Young Paul Howe [University of New Brunswick]
Chapter Thirteen: Defining and Redefining Democracy: The History of Electoral Reform in New Brunswick Gail Campbell [University of New Brunswick]
William Cross is Associate Professor of Political Science at Carleton University. His recent publications include Political Parties (UBC Press 2004); Political Parties, Representation and Electoral Democracy in Canada (Oxford University Press, 2002); and Rebuilding Canadian Party Politics (UBC Press 2000, with R. Kenneth Carty and Lisa Young).
Dr. Cross' work also appears in numerous academic journals. He has served as Director of the Canadian Democratic Audit since 2000.
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