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A novel perspective on elites and political leadership

Elites
Parliaments
Political Leadership
Representation
Party Members
Power
S03
Elena Semenova
Freie Universität Berlin
Juan Rodríguez Teruel
University of Valencia

Endorsed by the ECPR Standing Group on Elites and Political Leadership


Abstract

This Section aims to bring together various theoretical and methodological approaches to studying elites and political leadership and to highlight these studies' contributions to explaining and better understanding current and historical societal changes. Drawing on the repeated success of the Standing Group on Elites and Political Leadership's sections (an average of nine panels since 2015), we propose the following nine exciting Panels, some co-sponsored by other ECPR Standing Groups or Research Networks. Following the success of the panel on political psychology in Prague, we continue to strengthen research on political leadership within our Standing Group. Panel 1 (chair: Rudolf Merz) is co-endorsed with the Standing Group on Political Psychology and deals with political leaders and their followers. The panel invites theoretical and empirical papers on various aspects of the psychology of political leadership. Panel 2 (chair: TBC) explores the questions raised by political elites' use of public opinion research and the crisis of representation. The panel invites theoretical and empirical Papers linked to three lines of inquiry: the production of public opinion research, representational practices, and selective responsiveness. Taking stock of cutting-edge elite research, we want to analyse how political careers have transformed in a polycrisis environment. Section Chairs have therefore organized a panel (Panel 3; chair: Juan Rodriguez Teruel) that examines, from a comparative perspective, how the political careers of various types of elites develop in different institutional settings. In Panel 4 (chair: Despina Alexiadou), we will examine the role of political parties as primary career gatekeepers for political recruitment to parliamentary and ministerial positions. The panel invites theoretical and empirical papers that study the role of political parties in candidate selection to different types of positions, political careers in parties, and party patronage. Panel 5 (chair: Elena Semenova) deals with how institutional frameworks shape politicians' decisions to move across territorial levels of the polity (i.e., across the local, regional, national, or supranational levels). This panel invites case studies and comparative papers on various multi-level countries worldwide. Panel 6 (chair: TBC) focuses on novel developments in elite and political leadership theory by discussing new avenues in representation theory, populist leadership, and technocracy, among the possible topics. Panel 7 (chair: TBC) aims to bridge the gap between elite studies and public administration studies by analysing administrative elites' socio-demographic profiles, careers, and attitudes. We are interested in empirical papers from various institutions and territorial levels. Panel 8 (chair: Luca Verzichelli) examines the connection between what the representatives think of their role and what is the general perception of the representative role. This traditional object of comparative political science can be approached today using different frameworks (policy convergence, ideological congruence, etc.) and by means of a multitude of methodological tools, including new forms of experimental design. Contributions with different theoretical and methodological points of view are welcome. Finally, in Panel 9 (chair: TBC), we discuss the role of elites in developing and implementing public policies. Among the other topics, we invite theoretical and empirical papers on political representation and policy outcomes, party pledges and policies, technocratic policies, and populism and public policies.