Austrian and Swedish Social Democrats in Crisis: Party Strategy and Organization in Corporatist Regimes


Journal Article

Socialists and social democrats have probably nowhere been better entrenched than in Austria and Sweden. Yet in both countries, they have suffered electoral defeats in the 1980s and early 1990s, just as socialists in many other West European nations. Changes in class structure and the economic climate during socialist government incumbency do not satisfactorily explain socialist decline. Instead, this article focuses on the organizational structure of Austrian and Swedish social democracy to explain the parties' strategic immobility when faced with the new electoral challenges of free market liberalism and left-libertarian politics. Differences in the parties' organizational structure help to account for the respective timing of electoral crisis and the organizational reforms and new policy initiatives chosen in response to such crises. © 1994, SAGE Periodicals Press. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kitschelt, H

Published Date

  • January 1, 1994

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 3 - 39

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1552-3829

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0010-4140

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/0010414094027001001

Citation Source

  • Scopus