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How party linkages shape austerity politics: clientelism and fiscal adjustment in Greece and Portugal during the eurozone crisis

journal contribution
posted on 14.11.2014 by Alexandre Afonso, Sotirios Zartaloudis, Yannis Papadopoulos
Drawing on an analysis of austerity reforms in Greece and Portugal during the sovereign debt crisis from 2009 onwards, we show how the nature of the linkages between parties and citizens shapes party strategies of fiscal retrenchment. We argue that parties which rely to a greater extent on the selective distribution of state resources to mobilize electoral support (clientelistic linkages) are more reluctant to agree to fiscal retrenchment because their own electoral survival depends on their ability to control state budgets to reward clients. In Greece, where parties relied extensively on these clientelistic linkages, austerity reforms have been characterized by recurring conflicts and disagreements between the main parties, as well as a fundamental transformation of the party system. By contrast, in Portugal, where parties relied less on clientelistic strategies, austerity reforms have been more consensual because fiscal retrenchment challenged to a lesser extent the electoral base of the mainstream parties.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Politics and International Studies

Published in

Journal of European Public Policy

Citation

AFONSO, A., ZARTALOUDIS, S. and PAPADOPOULOS, Y., 2015. How party linkages shape austerity politics: clientelism and fiscal adjustment in Greece and Portugal during the eurozone crisis. Journal of European Public Policy, 22(3), pp. 315-334.

Publisher

© Taylor and Francis

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2015

Notes

This article is closed access.

ISSN

1350-1763

eISSN

1466-4429

Language

en

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