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Coalition Governance in Europe

Comparative Politics
Government
Parliaments
Political Parties
Coalition
P056
Patrícia Calca
Centro de Investigação e Estudos de Sociologia – CIES-IUL

Wednesday 10:30 - 12:15 (26/08/2020)


Abstract

After about five decades of research by game theorists, country experts and comparative politics scholars on why some coalition governments form while others do not, how they distribute office and policy payoffs, how they make arrangements to guarantee a certain level of stability, how they eventually collapse and the electoral consequences of their downfall, the research tradition ‘coalition studies’ has become fairly mature. However, this workshop invites scholars to an area of study which have received less attention, namely, the study the practice of governing together – often called “coalition governance”. Specifically, the main focus is on decision-making structure of governments and how coalition cabinets avoid, manage and resolve conflicts, but also how this in turn affects its formation, policy-making and cabinet durability. Thus, the papers in the panel employ a dynamic coalition politics perspective, specifically, the idea that what happens at the formation stage shapes what happens during the government’s tenure, which in turn influences its durability. This is what Strøm, Müller, and Bergman (2008) label the “life cycle” of coalition governments. The panel focuses on coalition formation and governance in both Western Europe and Central Eastern Europe across the past decades. It builds both on data already collected and on new data currently being collected, in a large-scale comparative project on coalition governance. These data are unique in that they allow us to systematically analyze how multiparty governments form and govern during the most recent periods of party system change in Europe – which has not been done before. The panel is open both to statistical analyses of previously collected data (see for example www.erdda.org) and in-depth focused papers on the coalition cycle in one or a few countries. ------- Strøm, K., Müller, W. C., & Bergman, T. (2008). Cabinets and coalition bargaining: the democractic life cycle in Western Europe. Oxford University Press.

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