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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law [MPECCoL]


Francesco Biagi

From: Oxford Constitutions (http://oxcon.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved.date: 19 April 2021

Legislative initiatives by citizens — Direct democracy

General Editors: Rainer Grote, Frauke Lachenmann, Rüdiger Wolfrum.
Managing Editor: Ana Harvey

1. Referendums, plebiscites, petitions, citizens’ initiatives and recalls represent the most common forms of popular consultations by which the people are asked to vote directly on an issue, a policy or an elected representative (direct democracy). Both from a theoretical and practical standpoint, drawing a clear-cut distinction among these consultations is extremely complicated. As far as the plebiscite is concerned, one cannot find a generally accepted definition within the literature, and in practice the term ‘plebiscite’ has been used to describe very...
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