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This book was first published in Dutch in 1981. It was called `Het staatsrecht van de landen der Europese Gemeenschappen (Constitutional Law of the EC Member States) and covered the then nine member states of the European Communities.
Since that time, new editions have come to include new member states. The fifth edition, which was published in 1998, dealt with all fifteen countries that belonged to the European Union before the accession of ten new ones in 2004. An updated sixth edition, containing chapters on the same fifteen countries, was published in the spring of 2004. It is this sixth edition which is now presented in an English translation for the first time.
This invaluable book has been a highly successful teaching and research tool in the Netherlands for almost 25 years. It is a unique and comprehensive study of the constitutional systems and constitutional law of fifteen Member States of the European Union. Its fully updated sixth edition was published in June 2004, and now appears in an English translation for the first time.
The work describes in depth, though not in detail, the constitutional systems of the fifteen countries which were Member States of the European Union before the recent accession of ten new Sates. It contains chapters on Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Each chapter starts with a sketch of the constitutional history of the country concerned as an indispensable background to a proper understanding of that country's constitution as it operates today.
The outline of the constitutional system which follows, deals with the sources of constitutional law, the federal of unitary character of the state, the head of state, the government, parliament, executive-legislative relationships, the legislative process, parliamentary control of government, electoral system, political parties, post-World War II election results and governments, the judiciary, regional and local government, and fundamental rights.