Rokkanovih pedeset nijansi? Rekoncepcija nacionalizacije lokalnog političkog sustava u belgijskom kontekstu
An Heyerick, Kristof Steyvers
Hrvatska i komparativna javna uprava
This paper scrutinises local party system nationalisation beyond the national versus non-national dichotomy in the context of Belgium. Three main points stand out. First, a more close-knit assessment of the vertical autonomy of the parts comprising the system invokes the subtypes of national, pseudo-national, pseudo-local, and independent local lists. Applying this to all those who took part in the last two rounds of local elections demonstrates the Belgian municipal scene is predominated by
... ts having at least implicit links with a national party (even when their label is non-national). Second, this typology has been inserted to assess the nationalisation of the place-bound partisan assemblage. We have developed discrete indices of local party system nationalisation expressing the ratio between the subtypes outlined above in the electoral and the parliamentary arena. Scores pointed to relative local party system nationalisation, without reaching its alleged end-state. Nationalisation is also more prominent in the council than in the electoral offer. Third, the paper tried to explain variation in local party system nationalisation by considering the conjoined effect of place-bound social morphology and political ecology variables. Binary logistic regression shows that overall political ecology matters more (often) than social morphology (being more predictive for the parliamentary than for the electoral variant of the index). Also, further particular effects appear. First, morphological factors do not significantly increase the odds of the electoral local party system being nationalised. Second, specific morphological factors do matter for the parliamentary local party system to be nationalised. Third, the same specific ecological factors matter in the case of both electoral and parliamentary party system nationalisation. Here, the particular relevance of path dependency as the preceding degree of national party organisation comes to the fore. Ultimately, a substantial amount of variance remains unexplained. Herein lie the limits of a quantitative approach focusing on the effect of exogenous conditions on local party system nationalisation. To fully understand this, the interaction with endogenous within-party decisions should be tackled. Future research also needs to assess if, how far, and under which conditions our insights travel comparatively.