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Party Systems and Economic Policy Change in Postcommunist Democracies

Ideological Consensus and Institutional Competition

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Are ideological and institutional characteristics of party systems important predictors of economic policy change in postcommunist democracies? The weakness of far left economic parties is an important predictor of market reform. However, institutional and ideological concentration has a larger impact. In particular, the difference between ideological and institutional concentration most strongly predicts market reform. Party system ideological consensus in favor of market reform and on national identity facilitates economic liberalization, but party system institutional concentration has a counteracting, inhibiting effect. Thus, the widely noted tendency of multiparty coalitions to slow and compromise policy reforms is outweighed by the reform-inducing effect of more competitive party systems.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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  • Comparative Politics is an international journal that publishes scholarly articles devoted to the comparative analysis of political institutions and behavior. It was founded in 1968 to further the development of comparative political theory and the application of comparative theoretical analysis to the empirical investigation of political issues. Comparative Politics communicates new ideas and research findings to social scientists, scholars, and students, and is valued by experts in research organizations, foundations, and consulates throughout the world.
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