Lithuania: Brave Enough to Implement Daring Democratic Reforms?

Jolanta Vaiciuniene and Saulius Nefas

in The Oxford Handbook of Local and Regional Democracy in Europe

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199562978
Published online January 2011 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Politics & International Relations

Lithuania: Brave Enough to Implement Daring Democratic Reforms?

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Politics
  • Regional Political Studies
  • Comparative Politics


Show Summary Details


This article discusses the transition of Lithuania after its freedom from annexation to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). The tradition of local democracy and parliamentarism in Lithuania developed during the Middle Ages. However, this formation was interrupted by two occupations. When the country sought to re-established its independence, first at the beginning and then at the end of the twentieth century, the achievements of the neighbouring countries were followed by Lithuania hence no specific Lithuanian model emerged. The system of democracy at the central government level is founded on a semi-presidential management model, although there are several claims that is has a dominating role of the parliament. In practice, power is divided, which is crucial in a democratic state. While Lithuania has a decentralized law on self-government at the local level, this is restricted and controlled by a central government unable to develop local self-government and by local politicians who cling to their deemed valuable links with the central government hence unable to resist when their powers of self-government become weakened. And while Lithuania is in the process of developing into a modern democratic state, the nation is still on its way to maturity where more challenges and difficulties will arise.

Keywords: Lithuania; local democracy; parliamentarism; semi-presidential management model; government; decentralized law; self-government; local self-government

Article.  8506 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; Regional Political Studies ; Comparative Politics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.