Patrons, Clients and Policies: Patterns of Democratic Accountability and Political Competition

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Herbert Kitschelt, Steven I. Wilkinson
Cambridge University Press, Mar 29, 2007 - Business & Economics - 377 pages
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Most models of party competition assume that citizens vote for a platform rather than narrowly targeted material benefits. However, there are many countries where politicians win elections by giving money, jobs, and services in direct exchange for votes. This is not just true in the developing world, but also in economically developed countries - such as Japan and Austria - that clearly meet the definition of stable, modern democracies. This book offers explanations for why politicians engage in clientelistic behaviours and why voters respond. Using newly collected data on national and sub-national patterns of patronage and electoral competition, the contributors demonstrate why explanations based on economic modernization or electoral institutions cannot account for international variation in patron-client and programmatic competition. Instead, they show how the interaction of economic development, party competition, governance of the economy, and ethnic heterogeneity may work together to determine the choices of patrons, clients and policies.

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About the author (2007)

Herbert Kitschelt is George V. Allen Professor of International Relations in the Department of Political Science at Duke University. He is the editor of Continuity and Change in Contemporary Capitalism (with Peter Lange, Gary Marks and John D. Stephens, 1999) and author of Post-Communist Party Systems: Competition, Representation, and Inter-Party Cooperation (with Zdenka Mansfeldova, Radoslaw Markowski and Gabor Toka, 1999), The Transformation of European Social Democracy (1994) and The Radical Right in Western Europe (1995) which won the Woodrow Wilson Award of the APSA in 1996.

Steven I. Wilkinson is Nilekani Professor of India and South Asia and Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at Yale University. His book Votes and Violence: Electoral Competition and Ethnic Riots in India (Cambridge University Press, 2004) was co-winner of the American Political Science Association's 2005 Woodrow Wilson Foundation prize. He is currently researching the links between colonial inheritances and post-independence levels of democracy, governance and conflict.

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