What is -from an economic point of view- the ideal size of a state?


Let’s have a look at some statistics:

– When talking about size, population happens to be the most often used measuring tool, but there are important differences: China has a population of more than a thousand million, and Tuvalu, on the other hand, has only 12,000 inhabitants.

– Historically, we have the following evolution: in 1900, there were 50 states in the world; in 1945, 74; and today, 195.
Among the richest ten states (taking into account GDP), nine of them were small, and in the same year, in the HDI (Human Development Index), eight out of ten.

In 1995, 87 countries had less than five million inhabitants, and 58, less than two million and a half.

Many definitions have been given to define words as Nation, State, Country … The Weber’s “legal monopoly of violence,” Deutch’s “common mistakes of our ancestors”. In our case, in practice, we use the structure of the sovereignty criteria. It would be unrealistic to have all the same size, but this one is an attempt to get to know what the most appropriate size would be. There is few theoretical background: in Plato’s “Laws” book, he said they were enough to defend themselves, so to say 5,040 families. Aristotle, what experience shows. Montesquieu, who emphasized proximity with citizens (in this sense, see the discussions between Madison and the anti-federalists in the United States in 1787).

Read @ European Partnership for Independence