The distributive game of school closures: Are political parties more responsive to advocacy groups representing core voters or swing voters?
2014 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Other academic)
This article proposes a new way of analysing the dynamics by which political majorities respond to advocacy group activities between elections. I argue that the type of voter mobilised by advocacy groups could play a role in deciding whether or not they are able to infuence political proposals. The explanatory value of this approach is demonstrated by a study of the geographic distribution of school closures in Swedish local governments 2002--2010. Closures of public schools are one of the most important drivers of contentious politics in Sweden. Two hypotheses are tested. The rst hypothesis predicts that political majorities are more likely to listen to advocacy groups mobilising swing voters. The second hypothesis, predicts that the political majorities are more likely to listen to advocacy groups that can mobilise their own supporters. The results provide stronger support for the second hypothesis. More specifically, political majorities avoid decisions on school closures aecting core districts to the Centre party, a party that have ideological and electoral motives to not upset their electorate. Furthermore, the results suggest that some advocacy group activities may be more likely to stop closures in this type of district than in other districts.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Social movements, swing voters, public opinion, interest groups
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-231927OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-231927DiVA: diva2:745863
ECPR 2014 Glasgow