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Explaining Party Emergence in Swedish Local Politics 1973–2002

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    Abstract

    Since individuals demanding formations of new parties face a collective action problem, I inquire why people form new parties, and why this political strategy became increasingly popular between 1973 and 2002 in Swedish municipalities. Case-studies indicate that ‘strong emotions’ – i.e. anger, frustration and indignation – mobilize rational actors to start up new parties. However, ‘strong emotions’ only explain why individuals form parties in the first place, not why party formation has become a popular strategy. Hence, I hypothesize that entrepreneurs forming parties at t inspire potential entrepreneurs in neighbouring municipalities at t + 1. Since previous attempts to explain the increasing number of new parties in Sweden have failed, I maintain that the support the hypothesis gains adds important knowledge to this field.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by The Ratio Institute in its series Ratio Working Papers with number 115.

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    Length: 32 pages
    Date of creation: 03 Jan 2008
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:ratioi:0115

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    Keywords: Party entrepreneurs; new parties; emotional arousal; rational imitation; local politics; Sweden;

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    1. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
    2. Robert H. Bates & Avner Greif & Margaret Levi & Jean-Laurent Rosenthal, 1998. "Analytic Narratives," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 6355.
    3. Harald Bathelt & Andersand Malmberg & Peter Maskell, 2002. "Clusters and Knowledge Local Buzz, Global Pipelines and the Process of Knowledge Creation," DRUID Working Papers 02-12, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    4. Joseph Willey, 1998. "Institutional Arrangements and the Success of New Parties in Old Democracies," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 46(3), pages 651-668, 08.
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