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Combining deductive and inductive elements to measure party system responsiveness in challenging contexts: an approach with evidence from Latin America


Bornschier, Simon (2020). Combining deductive and inductive elements to measure party system responsiveness in challenging contexts: an approach with evidence from Latin America. European Political Science, 19(4):540-549.

Abstract

Contexts outside the advanced developed democracies present a challenge to assessing how well party systems reflect voter preferences across over-arching policy dimensions because not all electorates readily interpret political conflict in dimensional terms. In this contribution, I advocate an approach suited for such contexts that combines deductive and inductive elements: It starts out with what observers consider the most important dividing lines in a party system, and then goes on to operationalize these dimensions in an inductive fashion by drawing on all theoretically relevant items that are available in mass and elite surveys. I devise a relative-fit measure of responsiveness that can be compared across space and time, even if positions at the elite and mass levels are measured on different scales. To illustrate the usefulness of the strategy, I show how it leads to novel contrasts in terms of programmatic responsiveness among four Latin American countries, namely, Chile, Brazil, Venezuela, and Bolivia.

Abstract

Contexts outside the advanced developed democracies present a challenge to assessing how well party systems reflect voter preferences across over-arching policy dimensions because not all electorates readily interpret political conflict in dimensional terms. In this contribution, I advocate an approach suited for such contexts that combines deductive and inductive elements: It starts out with what observers consider the most important dividing lines in a party system, and then goes on to operationalize these dimensions in an inductive fashion by drawing on all theoretically relevant items that are available in mass and elite surveys. I devise a relative-fit measure of responsiveness that can be compared across space and time, even if positions at the elite and mass levels are measured on different scales. To illustrate the usefulness of the strategy, I show how it leads to novel contrasts in terms of programmatic responsiveness among four Latin American countries, namely, Chile, Brazil, Venezuela, and Bolivia.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Political Science and International Relations
Language:English
Date:1 December 2020
Deposited On:23 Nov 2020 09:33
Last Modified:26 Nov 2020 02:11
Publisher:Palgrave Macmillan
ISSN:1680-4333
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1057/s41304-020-00272-z
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant ID100017_149531
  • : Project TitleThe “Left Turn” in Latin America and Party System Responsiveness

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