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Political and Economic Systems. Main Idea. The world’s countries have a variety of government and economic systems based on differing philosophies. . Political and Economic Systems. Governments usually reflects beliefs about authority, independence, and human rights.

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Main idea
Main Idea

The world’s countries have a variety of government and economic systems based on differing philosophies.

Political and economic systems1
Political and Economic Systems

  • Governments usually reflects beliefs about authority, independence, and human rights.

  • Economic systems reflect people’s ideas about the use of resources and the distribution of wealth

Four characteristics that defines a country
Four Characteristics that defines a Country

  • Territory

  • Population

  • Sovereignty

  • Government


  • A country’s territory includes the land, water, and natural resources within it boundaries.

  • A country’s resources may be even more important than its size.

  • Land and resources are common causes of war.

Nation s boundaries
Nation’s Boundaries

  • Natural divisions such as mountains and rivers serve as boundaries.

  • They can shrink or expand due to war and conquests.

  • Through negotiations that result in international treaties or agreements.

Geographical factors of a powerful nation
Geographical Factors of a Powerful Nation

  • Can influence a nation’s power to control a territory

    Why and How did Great Britain spread it power around the world?

  • It was an island nation with easy access to ocean travel and trade.

  • It had a large supply of coal and iron, which helped it become an industrial and military power


  • The size of the population does not determine the existence of a country.

  • People are assured protection by their government.

  • In return, citizens must pay taxes, serve in the military, or carry out other obligations to the government.


Definition: A nation’s freedom from outside control

  • A sovereign country is one that can rule itself by establishing its own policies and determine it own course of action.

  • A country’s sovereign entitles it to act independently, deal equally with other sovereign countries, and protects its territory and citizens.

Pros and cons of geographic factors
Pros and Cons of Geographic factors

  • Help a nation defend and maintain its sovereignty

    Example: The United Kingdom is separated from the rest of

    Europe by the English Channel and the North Sea.

  • Weakens the country’s ability to maintain its sovereignty

    Example: Belgium and Poland stands on a plain

Government structures
Government Structures

  • Every country contains smaller units

    • States

    • Provinces

    • Republics

  • Understanding the relationships between smaller units and the central government.

Political and economic systems

A unitary system were one central government runs the nation.

  • The central government makes laws for the entire nation.

  • Local governments have only those powers that the central government gives to them.

    Examples: Great Britain and Japan

Political and economic systems


Some powers are given to the national government and other powers are reserved for more local governments.

Example: United States


Smaller political units keep their sovereignty and give the central government only very limited powers in such field such as defense and foreign commerce.

Key purpose for confederation: several states can cooperate in common concerns and still remain separate identities.

Government authority
Government Authority

  • Authoritarian governments (leaders held all, or nearly all, political power)

    • Dictatorship

    • Totalitarianism

    • Monarchy

    • Democracy

Political and economic systems

Dictatorship is a type of authoritarian government in which power is concentrated in a small group or even a single person.

  • Most common of authoritarian government

  • Uses military forces or political terror to gain and exercise power.

  • No freedom for expressing their own opinion.

Political and economic systems

Totalitarian is the most extreme form of dictatorship. which power is concentrated in a small group or even a single person.

  • The governments tries to control every part of society.

    • Politics

    • Economy

    • People’s personal lives

Political and economic systems

Monarchs inherit their authorities by being born into the ruling family.

  • Kings

  • Queens

  • Pharaohs

  • Shahs

  • Sultans

Political and economic systems

Democracy-the people choose their leaders and have the power to set government policy.

  • All the nation’s eligible adults citizens have the right to choose the representatives making the country’s laws.

  • One of the world’s most populous democratic nations is the US.

Types of economic systems
Types of Economic Systems power to set government policy.

Economic Problem

What (and how many) goods and services will be produce?

How will these products be produced?

How will the products and the wealth gained from their sale be


Traditional economy
Traditional Economy power to set government policy.

  • Nearly all goods and services produced by people are consumed in their own family or village.

  • Also known as subsistence economies since there is little surplus production.

  • There is little need for market where people can buy and sell excess goods.

Market economy
Market Economy power to set government policy.

An economic system that gives the great freedoms to individuals and groups.

  • Also known as free enterprise.

  • Primary form is capitalism.

Market economy1
Market Economy power to set government policy.

In a capitalist market economy:

  • The private individuals and group decides the answer to the economic problem.

  • Their influence comes from the law of supply and demand.

  • Increases economical well-being.

    Pure capitalism system-the government would not take part on

    in the economy.

Command economy
Command Economy power to set government policy.

An economic system controlled by a single, central government.

  • All economic decisions are made by government leaders exerting authoritarian control.

  • The government answers the economic problem.

Mixed economy
Mixed Economy power to set government policy.

  • Some nations have a mixture of economic systems

  • Socialism is a mixed economy.

  • The philosophy of socialism is that the state should own and run basics industries

    • Transportation

    • Banking

    • Communications

    • Coal mining

    • Steel industry

Socialism power to set government policy.

  • Wealth should be distribute more equally and that everyone is entitle to certain goods and services

  • Known as welfare states

  • Usually imposes high tax rates

Reading questions
Reading Questions power to set government policy.

  • Give an example of a famous leader in a dictatorship government?

  • Give an example of a famous monarch?

  • What is constitutional monarchy?

  • Name a country who practices a command economy?

  • Give an example of a planned economy?