Wolf, Sebastian (2015): Different Approaches, Different Results in Small State Studies: Complementary Views on the Monarchy and Traditional Governance in Liechtenstein. In: Swiss Political Science Review 21 (2), S. 350-361.
The research note comments on W. Veenendaal's article “A Big Prince in a Tiny Realm: Smallness, Monarchy, and Political Legitimacy in the Principality of Liechtenstein”. It is argued, inter alia, that the phenomenon of “princely self-restraint” should not be underestimated in Liechtenstein's constitutional reality. The character of the microstate's actual political system strongly depends on the individual personality of the Reigning Prince. A strong monarch who acts as a political actor with his own agenda should not be conceptualized as a neutral traditional leader. From the perspective of many citizens of Liechtenstein, the principality's political system is legitimate since it combines traditional authority and legal-rational authority in a unique way. Largely due to the powerful role of the government, the microstate is characterized by consensus-oriented hierarchical governance. Elite surveys can be seen as a useful instrument to overcome some of the methodological pitfalls of the elite interview approach.