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Nationalized incumbents and regional challengers Opposition- and incumbent-party nationalization in Africa

Wahman, Michael LU (2015) In Party Politics
Abstract
The African party literature, especially research prescribing to the long-dominant ethnic voting thesis, has asserted that African party systems exhibit low levels of party nationalization. However, systematic research on nationalization across parties and party systems is still lacking. This study argues that the prospects for building nationalized parties vary substantially between incumbent and opposition parties. Incumbent parties, with their access to state resources, have been successful in creating nationwide operations, even in countries where geographical factors have been unfavorable and where ethnic fractionalization is high. The analysis utilizes a new data set of disaggregate election results for 26 African countries to... (More)
The African party literature, especially research prescribing to the long-dominant ethnic voting thesis, has asserted that African party systems exhibit low levels of party nationalization. However, systematic research on nationalization across parties and party systems is still lacking. This study argues that the prospects for building nationalized parties vary substantially between incumbent and opposition parties. Incumbent parties, with their access to state resources, have been successful in creating nationwide operations, even in countries where geographical factors have been unfavorable and where ethnic fractionalization is high. The analysis utilizes a new data set of disaggregate election results for 26 African countries to calculate nationalization scores for 77 parties and study the correlates of party nationalization. The results show that factors like ethnic fractionalization, the size of the geographical area, and urbanization affect party nationalization, but only in the case of opposition parties. Incumbent parties, on the other hand, generally remain nationalized despite unfavorable structural conditions. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
in press
subject
keywords
parties, opposition, nationalization, incumbent, Africa
in
Party Politics
publisher
SAGE Publications Inc.
ISSN
1460-3683
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
0bc20b09-936b-4b41-88cc-db4f1602274e (old id 7762317)
date added to LUP
2015-08-18 11:02:22
date last changed
2016-04-15 13:29:27
@article{0bc20b09-936b-4b41-88cc-db4f1602274e,
  abstract     = {The African party literature, especially research prescribing to the long-dominant ethnic voting thesis, has asserted that African party systems exhibit low levels of party nationalization. However, systematic research on nationalization across parties and party systems is still lacking. This study argues that the prospects for building nationalized parties vary substantially between incumbent and opposition parties. Incumbent parties, with their access to state resources, have been successful in creating nationwide operations, even in countries where geographical factors have been unfavorable and where ethnic fractionalization is high. The analysis utilizes a new data set of disaggregate election results for 26 African countries to calculate nationalization scores for 77 parties and study the correlates of party nationalization. The results show that factors like ethnic fractionalization, the size of the geographical area, and urbanization affect party nationalization, but only in the case of opposition parties. Incumbent parties, on the other hand, generally remain nationalized despite unfavorable structural conditions.},
  author       = {Wahman, Michael},
  issn         = {1460-3683},
  keyword      = {parties,opposition,nationalization,incumbent,Africa},
  language     = {eng},
  publisher    = {SAGE Publications Inc.},
  series       = {Party Politics},
  title        = {Nationalized incumbents and regional challengers Opposition- and incumbent-party nationalization in Africa},
  year         = {2015},
}