As a community, municipality or commune are called those authorities ( territorial and sovereign public entities ), which are in the public administrative structure of the smallest states in space - administration, ie political- geographical administrative unit. This corresponds to the LAU -2 level of the European Union.

As a community level or municipal level is referred to the political level, which corresponds to the community, and in some countries the term is placed in the LAU -2 in countries other than LAU 1 level, therefore, the terms local level and community level not quite the same circumstances.

The local authority is the totality of all the organs, agencies, and authorities of the municipality. The building of the administrative headquarters is regionally differently called in German-speaking town hall, town house, community hall or municipal office.

  • 2.1 Germany
  • 2.2 Austria
  • 2.3 Switzerland
  • 2.4 Other countries


Middle Ages

In the late 11th century began in the western part of the Holy Roman Empire, a movement that is referred to in the sources with the terms coniuratio or communion. In Le Mans spread in 1070 a "conspiracy, which they called the Commune". Later, the citizens of Cambrai summoned in 1077 a long-planned " community ". They took advantage of the absence of the episcopal Lord. They summoned together by oath to the bishop to deny entry into the city if he does not recognize the new Confederation. Although this first municipality was crushed and dissolved again; Nevertheless, the struggle of the people of Cambrai to military sovereignty, jurisdiction and urban self-government to the 20s of the 13th century drew.

But also in other cities of the German language area, there were communal movements. So in 1074 in Cologne against the Archbishop of Cologne and in 1073 in Worms. In both cases, it was about the achievement of greater freedom from the feudal lord of the city, especially of spiritual masters. The city Mr. practiced with his servants and officials from the judicial and administrative powers in the city, he had power over the fortifications of the city, exercised market and customs rights and related income from it. Very often belonged to the lord of the city and the land of the city, so for its use for buildings and economic activity duties were paid. Furthermore, many citizens were in a personal relationship of dependency to the town Lord.

According to sources, in particular criticized the wealth merchants came to the lust for power of the ruler of the city. The complex reasons however, led to the fact that not only the merchants and artisans rebelled, but is also fled into the city of hearing farmers, ministerial and dependent servants joined the fight for the Commune.

Legal situation by country


In Germany they usually used for places or cities as a political community or local church the simplified term " community ", but also other regionally specific community includes forms. The municipal regulations shall be decided by the states. Inter-municipal cooperation that require legal personality, be included in a community association.

In Germany, the church (the former NUTS5 ) classified in the LAU 2 level, while managing communities are queued in LAU -1.


In Austria, one usually uses the simplified expression community, as well as other regionally specific community includes forms.

All municipalities in Austria are classified in LAU -2. LAU -1 level is not used.


The term municipality ( German municipality, French commune, bourgeoisie, Italian comune, Romansh vischnauncas ) is used much more frequently, binding and also officially in Switzerland due to a more intense presence of the names of other types of communities. Furthermore, the totality of all voting citizens of a political community can be understood under there; the notion of ' community ' then referred to the electoral commune or the electorate.

Community concepts in Switzerland:

  • Political community, including municipality, Munizipalgemeinde, [ commune ] bourgeoise, vischnanca burgaisa
  • Munizipalgemeinde
  • Civic community, and civic community, local community, local civic community, [ commune ] bourgeoise, vischnanca burgaisa
  • Corporation community
  • Unified community
  • Mixed community
  • Parish
  • School community
  • Fire show community
  • Bäuert
  • Fraction borough
  • District municipality
  • Civil community

See also:

  • Community dualism
  • Purpose community

Other countries

  • Albania: see Bashkia, Komuna
  • China: see municipality (China)
  • Denmark: see municipality (Denmark)
  • Finland: see community (Finland )
  • France: see community (France)
  • Italy: see Italian municipalities
  • Yugoslavia and its successor states of Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Macedonia: see Opština
  • Netherlands: see community (Netherlands)
  • Norway: see Kommune (Norway )
  • Poland: see Gmina
  • Portugal: see Freguesia
  • Sweden: see municipality (Sweden)
  • Slovakia: see community (Slovakia )
  • Spain: see Municipio
  • South Africa: see municipality (South Africa)
  • Japan: see community (Japan)
  • United States: see Town, City, Township