Compare and contrast governments that are unitary, confederate, and federal.


The chamber of the National Assembly of South Africa
The chamber of the National Assembly of South Africa

House of Commons, London
House of Commons, London


primary_sources.PNGBasic Forms of Governmentfrom the CIA World Factbook.

  • This is includes a nation-by-nation listing of all the nations in the world.
  • Includes links from the listing to fact page about each country.





Knesset Building, Home of the Israeli Parliament
Knesset Building, Home of the Israeli Parliament

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Unitary Form of Government: Governmental power is consolidated in the central governmentAn example of a Unitary Form of Government is The United Kingdom. The United Kingdom is made up of four different governments (England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland), and while each government has the power to make laws for their respected provinces, the ultimate power lies with England. For more information on The United Kingdom's Unitary Government, click here



Confederate Form of Government: States form a centralized government with limited powerAn example of a Confederate Form of Government would be the United States during the Articles of Confederation (1783-1789). Under the Articles of Confederation, each state had the power to make their own laws, limiting the power of the centralized government. The purpose was toprevent the state from becoming too powerful, like Great Britain, while still providing the 13 Colonies with a unified defense system. The ultimate flaw with the Articles of Confederation was that each state had too much individual power; and the centralized government did not have enough.For more information on The United States during the Articles of Confederation, click here





Federal Form of Government: Governmental power is shared between the central government and the statesThe current United States Government is an example of a Federal Form of Government. By using the Executive Branch, Judicial Branch, and Legislative Branch, the United States is able to use a 'checks and balances' type of government in order to prohibit one branch of government from becoming too powerful. For more information on the 3 United States Branches of Government, click here