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The Politics of Party FundingState Funding to Political Parties and Party Competition in Western Europe$
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Michael Koß

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572755

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572755.001.0001

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The Comparative Analysis of Party Funding Regimes

The Comparative Analysis of Party Funding Regimes

Chapter:
(p.15) 2 The Comparative Analysis of Party Funding Regimes
Source:
The Politics of Party Funding
Author(s):

Michael Koß

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572755.003.0002

This chapter defines important concepts such as ‘party funding regime’ and ‘private’, ‘public’, and ‘illegal’ sources of income of political parties. The differentiation of significant/insignificant and of public/private sources of income leads to four different cases being relevant for an examination of the politics of party funding: Germany is selected as a case where both public and private contributions play a significant role for the funding of political parties. Sweden is selected as a case where only public funding plays a significant role, whereas in Britain parties rely almost exclusively on private contributions. France is selected as a case where, at least up to 1988, neither public nor private, but illegal contributions (i.e. political corruption) were the only significant source of parties' income. The chapter concludes by analysing the conceptual problems that arise from the attempt to link highly complex phenomena such as party or party system change to developments in party funding regimes. Party funding regimes, it is argued, are a dependent rather than an independent variable.

Keywords:   party funding regime, private sources of party income, public sources of party income, political corruption, case selection, party change, party system change

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