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Party Patronage and Party Government in European Democracies$
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Petr Kopecký, Peter Mair, and Maria Spirova

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199599370

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199599370.001.0001

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Give Me Trafika: Party Patronage in the Czech Republic

Give Me Trafika: Party Patronage in the Czech Republic

(p.74) Chapter 5 Give Me Trafika: Party Patronage in the Czech Republic
Party Patronage and Party Government in European Democracies

Petr Kopecky

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses party patronage in the Czech Republic. The central argument of this chapter is that popular discourses overestimate the spread and use of patronage and, to a lesser degree, also that of clientelism in Czech politics. Using the framework, definitions, and measures employed in the volume as a whole, the chapter demonstrates that party patronage is neither particularly pervasive nor predominantly supposed to reward partisans with state jobs, something often implied in the academic studies of the Czech case, and in the country’s media and public debates. The chapter also demonstrates that while party patronage is most widespread in ministries, it is relatively evenly spread among different policy areas. The conclusion explores the broader implications of the observed patterns of patronage for understanding party and party government performance.

Keywords:   party patronage, Czech Republic, politically connected professionals, ministerial discretion, party recruitment, labour code

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