Determinants of dimension dominance

Book Section

In some countries, electoral competition predominantly revolves around redistributional questions (“first-dimension politics”), while in other countries, issues related to cultural matters (guns, gays, and god) or immigration play a more dominant role (“second-dimension politics”). This chapter studies the question of dimension dominance, or more precisely, under which circumstances the first dimension of political competition dominates the second dimension. The chapter presents cross-national estimates of the importance of redistributive vs. non-redistributive concerns in party competition and seeks to explain cross-national differences. It is argued that the dominance of first-dimension politics is a function of (relative) party polarization; the progressivity of welfare states; the historical strength of secular liberal parties; and clientelism, among other factors.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kitschelt, H; Rehm, P

Published Date

  • January 1, 2018

Book Title

  • Welfare Democracies and Party Politics: Explaining Electoral Dynamics in Times of Changing Welfare Capitalism

Start / End Page

  • 61 - 88

International Standard Book Number 13 (ISBN-13)

  • 9780198807971

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1093/oso/9780198807971.003.0003

Citation Source

  • Scopus