Definition of Federal, Governance and the Systems

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Definition of federal varies depends on the topic. Many people are more familiar with the terms federal when it comes to politic. On a bigger picture, we can define federal as a form of government, particularly referred as a central government which controls a group of regions. On the other hand, there are many usage of the word federal other than as a type of government. For example, there are federal styles in the terms of furniture design which associate to the federal period in United States with certain architecture style. You can therefore say that most of the time, the word federal is closely related with the existence of United States.

Definition of Federal

The Definition of Federal Governance and the Systems

When searching for the perfect definition of federal, 90% of the time people will be directed to a definition of federal government. Federal government itself can be defined as a kind of government that’s mainly portrayed by the existence of central government and a group of region which is self-governing in some aspects. The central government acts as the main actor which controls several political aspects that can’t be reserved to regional government. But as mentioned before, the regions are still free to self-govern in some aspect, except they don’t have the privilege to be involved in decision making process in the relation to foreign policy.

Thus from above explanation, we can say that federal government can also be defined as an alliance of states because of their nature to be able to self-govern. A definition of federal government itself is separated within three categories; federal state, federal monarchy and federal republic. In federal state, there is a subordinate of state which is under control of a federal system of government. Federal monarchy and federal republic on the other hand is as simple as federation of monarch and republic states. Definition of federal should be seen as much wider than a mere alliance of states.

There are several examples of federal government. The most protruding example would be United States, for the country is one of the most powerful and dominant states in the world. We can see that United States consist of many regional states that are controlled by the government in Washington D.C., so United States is really a definition of federal government. Definition of federal can also be found in other country such as Federal Government of Brazil, Mexico and Nigeria. Each country basically has the same type of governance which includes the supervising of its group of states by the central government.

READ: Definition of Constitution

Definition of federal system works in a way in which the powers are divided into two ranks of governance. The utmost power belongs to the central government. However, its states still have particular powers that can be exercised only in its territory. Usually, the federal government (or central government) involved with issues that can affect the whole nation. For example, Washington D.C deals with bigger issues such as export and import taxes to war declaration issues. On the other hand, other states deal with a more domestic issue. Their power is already set within the regulation to avoid abuse of power in the state level.

Well, after understanding the definition of federal system, some of you may ask is it the best kind of governance compared to others. To answer such question, we need to understand that each country has chosen a certain type of governance through a thorough and difficult consideration. Some types of governance may work in some states and yet do not work in other states. Therefore, to explicitly say the one type of governance is the best compared to others would be too naive, especially if we don’t consider the historical and cultural background of certain state.

READ: Definition of Government and Its System

In addition, one thing about federal type of government is that in some other time, friction may develop between the federal states and the central government. Politics after all are mainly defined by the competition of interest between actors involved. Therefore, by understanding the definition of federal system, it is hoped that you can comprehend a real definition of federal by following news about countries that use federal system as their type of governance.


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