Reasons Why We Study Government: Ever wondered the relevance of government as a subject or course in academic institution? Government in its general term relates to the processes of interaction and decision making among persons involved in a collective problem that is concomitant to the creation, reinforcement or reproduction of social norms and institutions.
Government is simply the management and control of a system. In defining government, we will categorize the term into two parts;
a. Government as an academic field of study, and
b. Government as an institution.
Government as an academic field of study is simply the cat, process and idea of learning about the concept, theories and principles of government and its institution and how they operate within a targeted territory or region.
Government as an institution is the body saddled with the power to make and enforce laws within a definite internationally recognized geographical entity or organization.
Government as an institution comprises majorly the three arms of government namely; the executive, legislature and judiciary. While the legislature makes the law, the executive enforces the law, while the judiciary sees to its interpretation.
Government as a course of study and government as a legal institution may interflow in the sense that being a member of a government institution or being a participant in the government of the state or an organization, gets one a practical view of the elements learnt in the course of study, while the act of studying government renders the institution visible and more easily accessible to one, having learned the tenets of its operation.
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Why We Study Government: 8 Major Reasons
Reasons why people study government may vary and range from their personal interest. But there are certain end products of studying government which shall be discussed below.
1. Geopolitical Information: The study of government gets people informed on international politics and regional or geographical effects in consideration for decision making, especially those decisions pertaining to the state.
Geopolitics involves international relations as influenced by geopolitical factors. It is the study and understanding of the effects of certain factors such as; demography, economics and geography in relation to politics. This aspect of information is very vital for any citizen intending to occupy any political position in the state. Since politics is all about decision making, most decisions cannot be safely made without considering these geopolitical factors.
This seems to be part of the hallmark of good governance. A good number of persons admire certain top seats at the government. It is unfortunate that some have no information or understanding of the geopolitical zones and how they should affect decision making. The study of government gives you an edge over these information.
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2. Political Participation: The study of government unarguably stirs up people’s interest in politics. People who got admitted into political science department, not being their choice of course are shown to develop the interest in the short run. The study of political science or any government related course such as government education is of course, such an interesting course of study.
I doubt if anyone would think otherwise. People study political sciences and other government related courses in order to widen their horizon and understanding of government, its policies and modus operandi, as well as to sustain their passion and interest in the said field. The knowledge and understanding of government stirs up power and confidence in persons. This boosts their interest the more foe the purpose of participating in politics.
Political participation here may be by way of participating in political discourse, involving in political rallies, contesting for certain political offices, seeing and understanding the need to participate in elections, employment of remedial tools in government when need be, such as; petitions, lobbying, pressure groups, campaigns, peaceful protest, etc.
People may also study government in order to register with a political party and then have a sense of substance, contribution and belonging. People who possess less knowledge of government may find themselves having little or nothing to add up to a political organization, and may therefore appear less relevant in such an organization or party because he understands nothing to offer. This may then cost him longer time that would have ordinarily to attain the height he desires, if at all he attains.
3. To Understand the Socio: Political and Economic Structures and Factors in the State: Leadership and governance demands that the sociological factors operate in a given territory be put into smooth consideration while in the process of decision making. The study of government gets the intending leader or leaders informed as to such sociological factors and its possible effects on governance. Such factors may include; environmental circumstances, religion, culture, etc.
Governance is particularly about the management of the economy. Economy of the state is not something to be managed with common sense or natural economic instinct. The study of government lays foundation knowledge for understanding of the state economy.
People may study government for the purpose of understanding the structure of the government. It is not entirely a common knowledge that the division of the arms of government into three arms is for a purpose. The purpose which includes; the enforcement of rule of law, enforcement of checks and balances, and most importantly the doctrine of separation of power. Political structures of the various nations are certainly not the same. States may practice federalism, confederalism, unitary system, presidential system, as the case may be, etc. People may study government in order to appreciate these structures.
4. Knowledge of the Citizens Rights, Obligations and Remedies: The study of government is basically about the structure of the state and governance, responsibilities of the government towards the citizens, and the citizens’ rights and obligation in the state, including remedies which they could employ upon the breach of their rights and non performance of the government’s obligation.
This could be a better reason to study government. When citizens are oblivious of their rights, it paves an opportunity for the government of the day to be irresponsible. When citizens are informed on their obligations, it promotes the sanity and harmony of the state. The study of government informs citizens of certain remedial tools to employ upon the inconsistency of the government, such as media tool, public opinion, pressure group, court action, petitions to the legislature, petitions to the ombudsman, peaceful protest, recall, etc.
5. Knowledge of History: In study of politics, history is indispensable. In fact, government and history cannot be studies in isolation of any. The mastery of the past renders the future predictable, and it have been said to help avoid certain mistakes of the past. Understanding the mistakes of the past leaders aids to curb future occurrence of a similar failure.
The mastery of history is power. People may choose to study government in order to acquire the power that is inherent to the knowledge of history.
6. Opportunities: The study of government unarguably creates opportunities for job employment. Government is a social science related course, and the acquisition of the degree makes one employable into administrative positions of any field, political appointments, ambassadorship, education sector, etc. People may choose to study government for this reason.
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7. Personal Development: People may choose to study government for the reason of personal development. The knowledge of government is considered social intelligence. People who desire to improve their social intellect may opt in for studying government for this reason.
The study of government is all encompassing. This could be correctly said because; all aspects of life are positioned to deal with certain structures and decision making. The study of government enhances skills in decision making, conflict resolution and many other positives necessary in building a harmonic society and peaceful coexistence amongst individuals.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.