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Organizing Political PartiesRepresentation, Participation, and Power$
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Susan E. Scarrow, Paul D. Webb, and Thomas Poguntke

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198758631

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198758631.001.0001

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Assessing the Strength of Party Organizational Resources

Assessing the Strength of Party Organizational Resources

A Survey of the Evidence from the Political Party Database

Chapter:
(p.31) 2 Assessing the Strength of Party Organizational Resources
Source:
Organizing Political Parties
Author(s):

Paul D. Webb

Dan Keith

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198758631.003.0002

This chapter provides a survey of four types of party organizational resources in the PPDB: members, money, staff, and territorial units. Findings include that around 3 per cent of voters now join political parties across the democratic world; that German and Spanish parties seem to be the richest in terms of absolute levels of funding, but parties in countries such as Austria and Norway are even stronger relative to the size of their economies or electorates; that party staffing levels are generally quite modest; and that countries where there is an emphasis on what is local tend to have the highest relative concentrations of party branches. Moreover, country differences consistently seem to outweigh party family differences in explaining variation in party organizational resources. The chapter concludes by proposing a composite index of party strength which enables us to construct a rank-ordering of 112 parties according to their overall organizational strength.

Keywords:   party resources, party membership, party finance, party staff, party organization

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