Party system institutionalization without parties: evidence from Korea

Hellmann, Olli (2014) Party system institutionalization without parties: evidence from Korea. Journal of East Asian Studies, 14 (1). pp. 53-84. ISSN 1598-2408

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Abstract

Formally institutionalized party organization is usually considered a prerequisite for the development of programmatic linkages between parties and voters. However, this paper shows that political parties in South Korea have succeeded in stabilizing interparty competition through programmatic linkages without making any significant efforts to build a formal organizational base. In fact, it could be argued that Korea is a “partyless” democracy, as political parties get easily captured by the interests of ambitious politicians, thus failing to establish themselves as independent actors. The paper therefore makes a more general argument about the concept of party system institutionalization: We need to rethink the current practice of aggregating the different attributes of party system institutionalization into a single scale, as these attributes do not seem to be connected in a linear fashion.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Subjects: J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General) > JF1338 Public administration > JF2011 Political parties
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions and public administration (Asia, Africa, Australia, Pacific Area, etc.) > JQ0021 Asia > JQ1499 East Asia Including China, Japan, Korea
Depositing User: Olli Hellmann
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2013 14:17
Last Modified: 25 Feb 2014 08:46
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/46543

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