Policy innovation and the dynamics of party competition: A Schumpeterian account of British Electoral Politics, 1950-2005

Hindmoor, Andrew (2008) Policy innovation and the dynamics of party competition: A Schumpeterian account of British Electoral Politics, 1950-2005. British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 10 3: 492-508. doi:10.1111/j.1467-856x.2008.00322.x

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Author Hindmoor, Andrew
Title Policy innovation and the dynamics of party competition: A Schumpeterian account of British Electoral Politics, 1950-2005
Journal name British Journal of Politics and International Relations   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1369-1481
Publication date 2008-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-856x.2008.00322.x
Open Access Status
Volume 10
Issue 3
Start page 492
End page 508
Total pages 17
Place of publication London, England
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2009
Language eng
Subject C1
9402 Government and Politics
1605 Policy and Administration
1606 Political Science
Abstract The first part of this article develops a critique of Anthony Downs’ An Economic Theory of Democracy and, more generally, of rational choice theories of party competition. Drawing on and adapting Joseph Schumpeter’s critique of general equilibrium theory, it is argued that the use of the equilibrium method within rational choice theory precludes the analysis of policy innovation. Having developed this theoretical argument, the second part of the article offers a ‘Schumpeterian’ account of the dynamics of British electoral competition between 1950 and 2005. Drawing on an analysis of 1,984 policy commitments within Conservative, Labour and Liberal general election manifestos, the fate of 758 policy innovations is tracked. Policy innovation, it is argued, generates an ongoing process of divergence and convergence between the political parties very different to that predicted within rational choice equilibrium analysis.
Keyword Party competition
Rational choice
Schubert Helga
Political parties
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2009 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Political Science and International Studies Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 4 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 14 Apr 2009, 14:05:06 EST by Elmari Louise Whyte on behalf of School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies