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Ideologische inertie op links, flexibiliteit op rechts?

Een onderzoek naar de mate van programmatische flexibiliteit bij liberalen en socialisten in Belgiƫ

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2015
Keywords ideology, manifestos, party change, Belgium
Authors Nicolas Bouteca
AbstractAuthor's information

    In order to win elections political parties sometimes adapt their policy platforms to a changing society. But according to some scholars left-wing parties are in this regard more reluctant than right-wing parties. The former would show less programmatic flexibility than the latter. Other authors nuance this difference and state that leftist parties are ideologically more volatile at one moment and rightist parties at another time. In this article we empirically test whether rightist parties show more programmatic flexibility than leftist parties. We make use of an in depth quantitative analysis of the socio-economic policy proposals of the Belgian liberal and social-democratic parties between 1961 and 2010. We find that the right-wing liberal party indeed makes larger programmatic changes. The intensity of the ties with social groups such as trade unions is probably the most important variable to explain this difference.


Nicolas Bouteca
Nicolas Bouteca promoveerde in 2011 op een proefschrift over ideologische convergentie. Momenteel werkt hij als docent aan de vakgroep politieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent en is hij lid van de onderzoeksgroep GASPAR. Zijn interesses zijn: ideologie, politieke partijen, electorale competitie en het Belgisch federalisme.
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