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Klaus Detterbeck, "Cartel Parties in Western Europe? Party Politics, 11 (March, 2005), 173-191.

First Paragraph:
In this article I discuss the empirical validity of the cartel thesis, and review three analytical dimensions of the concept: organizational change, functional change and change of party competition in Denmark, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. I use the empirical findings to elaborate the cartel party model, with three main results. First, in Denmark and Germany party cartels have developed in different ways; second, while the cartel thesis points to important developments, some assumptions are far-fetched and we therefore have to look for the core defining elements of cartel parties; third, the favourable and unfavourable conditions facilitating or hindering the development of party cartels have to be clarified.

Figures and Tables:
Table 1. The three analytical dimensions of cartel parties
Table 2. Representatives of subnational and supranational party strata in national party executive committees

First paragraph of Conclusion:
The foregoing discussion could be summed up in the suggestion that there should be three modifications to the cartel thesis. Denmark and Germany represent alternative paths to a party cartel. In Denmark, parties perceived an increasing vulnerability of societal resources and adapted by moving towards the state. In Germany, parties realized that they could use their dominance in the political institutions ('Parteienstaat') to expand their organizational resources by acting collectively and sharing the resources provided by the state. Thus, it was not a crisis that motivated formation of the German party cartel, but the capacity of the major parties to further their common interests. My first suggestion, therefore, is that we should allow for 'multiple causation' (Ragin, 1987) when explaining cartel tendencies.