2013. “Informal Institutions and Horizontal Accountability: Protocols in the Chilean Budgetary Process.” Latin American Politics and Society 55 (4): 74-94. PDF.
Studies of executive‐legislative relations are usually based only on the analysis of formal institutions, although informal institutions also shape interbranch behavior. This omission leads to questionable results when scholars examine the capacity of state institutions to audit other public agencies and branches of government. This article explores how the protocols, an informal institution that shapes the Chilean budgetary negotiations, have increasingly allowed the congress to have a more relevant budgetary role than what the constitution permits. It argues that protocols accommodate some of the undesired consequences of a charter that is strongly biased toward the central government, and describes how this institution has departed from its stringent budgetary focus to encompass broader executive‐legislative agreements that enhance the legislature’s capacity to oversee the executive.