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Education and elections: a comparative analysis of party manifestos in OECD countries

  • Jakobi, Anja P.

New institutionalism has repeatedly shown that education has become a common institution in current world society, but so far parties have not been the subject of inquiry. This is surprising, given the fact that institutionalization processes relevant to politics should be well observable in political statements. In this article, I compare the political aim to expand educational opportunities in party manifestos of 25 OECD countries. The research question is whether or not there are significant differences in favoring educational expansion over time, across countries and political positions. The article is structured as follows: In a first step, I present the theoretical background of new institutionalism, concluding with three hypotheses related to political parties and educational expansion: We should be able to observe a growing consensus on educational expansion over time; we should able to observe this development across countries; and we should be able to observe such institutionalization in manifestos with different political positions. In a second step, I present data and methods. In the third to fifth steps, I test each of the hypotheses, differentiating the institutionalization of education over time, across countries and across different political wings. The results strongly support the theoretical assumption of new institutionalism.

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Paper provided by University of Bremen, Collaborative Research Center 597: Transformations of the State in its series TranState Working Papers with number 88.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:sfb597:88
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