Party ideology and clientelistic linkage

Eitan Tzelgov, Yi-Ting Wang

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How does parties' ideology affect their linkage strategies? While scholars maintain that economically right wing parties are more clientelistic, there has been no systematic study testing this argument. We examine the conservative ideology-clientelism nexus with multi-level quantitative analyses of parties' clientelistic appeals. Our analysis reveals a robust, yet nuanced relationship between ideology and clientelism. Specifically, right wing parties are more clientelistic than left wing parties, but only with regard to providing broad economic rents to clients. In contrast, economically conservative parties are not more likely to engage in individual targeted clientelism. Moreover, parties' ties with economic interests mediate the relationship between ideology and clientelism. Finally, the association between parties' linkage to business interests and rents clientelism is attenuated by country-level economic liberalism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374–387
Number of pages14
JournalElectoral Studies
Early online date25 Sep 2016
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016

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