Government Formation in Multi-Level Settings: Party Strategy by I. Stefuriuc

By I. Stefuriuc

This ebook examines how events negotiate coalition offers on the subnational point utilizing the examples of Germany and Spain. In such multi-level settings, events are current at a number of negotiation tables usually having to make tricky offerings approximately their function within the coalition and the relative advantages of being in executive over the competition.

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The processes of coalition formation in multi-level settings are “nested games” (Tsebelis, 1990). Nevertheless, this theoretical model presumes that parties are unitary, or at least highly disciplined, actors, and that such general agreements can be imposed and maintained from the centre. It is possible, however, to draw on the basic idea of this model while also relaxing the unitary-actor assumption. The argument here is that political parties will try to develop coordinated coalition strategies (Downs, 1998) – but the degree of coordination will vary, depending on how much autonomy the regional party branch has and how much asymmetry exists between the party systems at the two levels.

G. Lembruch, 1976, 1978; Roberts, 1989; Jun, 1994; Debus, 2008; Deschouwer, 2008; S¸ tefuriuc, 2007, 2009a). The general expectation proposed is that party leaders will attempt to adopt congruent coalition formulae across levels, insofar as electoral arithmetic makes this possible (Roberts, 1989). This expectation is plausible if we think that congruent coalitions are more likely than incongruent ones to help parties maintain policy coherence and coordination across levels of government. , 2003; Hough and Jeffery, 2006).

Thus, when talking about a party’s coalition strategy in a multi-level setting, the first aspect that needs to be clarified is what we mean by “the party”. ” (Laver and Schofield, 1990: 14). For coalition research, the level at which the power to decide on coalition formation is located within the party is of utmost importance. In multi-level settings, sub-national leaders generally enjoy a certain degree of autonomy where coalition decisions are concerned. The limits of this autonomy vary from party to party – and even within the same party, from one territorial unit to another.

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