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Lee Michael Savage, "Who gets in? Ideology and government membership in Central and Eastern Europe," Party Politics, 20 (July, 2014), 547-562. [Available at ]

First paragraph:
Who gets into government and why? These are the key questions for scholars of coalition formation. The obvious answer is the 'party that won the election', but while it is true that the largest party in parliament tends to govern, in most democracies it rarely governs alone. It is for this reason that we must consider the factors that determine which particular parties get to participate in government as part of a coalition.

Figures and Tables:
Table 1. Parties and governments in Central and Eastern Europe
Table 2. Correlations between expert survey and corresponding dimensions from the Benoit and Laver survey.
Table 3. Means and standard errors of party policy positions by country. Czech Republic Hungary Poland
Table 4. Logit estimation of parties' likelihood of getting into government.
Figure 1. Effect of ideological distance fromthe formateur on probability of getting into government.
Figure 2. Effect of ideological distance from the median on probability of getting into government.
Table 5. Change in predicted probability of participating in government.
Table A1. Dimensions in the expert survey of party policy positions.
Table A2. Correlations between party policy positions and Benoit and Laver's left-right dimension.

Last Paragraph:
These ideological variables were the most significant determinants of which parties get into government in CEE, along with previous experience of participation in a government that terminated prematurely. This demonstrates that when the left-right dimension is operationalized with due consideration to the context of CEE, ideology matters: it structures party competition for government right across the region and has also been important over time.

Last updated June 2014