Chaire de recherche du Canada en économie politique internationale et comparée (CRÉPIC)
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Federalism and Compliance with International Agreements: Belgium and Canada Compared
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Date de publication
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Date de publication: 2010
Maison d'édition : The Hague Journal of Diplomacy
Auteur(s) : Stéphane Paquin
Summary
Th is article aims to assess the eff ectiveness of two systems of governance with respect to the making of international treaties: the Canadian system, where the decision-making process is more centralized and where intergovernmental mechanisms are poorly institutionalized; and the Belgian system, where substate actors have the role of co-decision and where intergovernmental mechanisms are highly institutionalized. Th e central question to be discussed is: is the fact that one gives an important role to sub-state actors in the making of a country’s treaty by means of institutionalized intergovernmental mechanisms something that negatively or positively aff ects the foreign policy of a state? And is this a positive- or a negative-sum game at the level of the conclusion and implementation of treaties? Th e article concludes that the Belgian system is more eff ective, largely because its sub-state actors have an important role at every step of the conclusion of a treaty. 
Keywords
paradiplomacy, federalism, international agreements, Canada, Belgium, treaty-making