Decision-Making Networks Across Political Systems

Metz, Florence Alessa; Brandenberger, Laurence (2018). Decision-Making Networks Across Political Systems (Unpublished). In: Swiss Political Science Association Annual Conference 2018 in Geneva, February 6, 2018.

Paper.pdf - Other
Available under License BORIS Standard License.

Download (256kB) | Preview

Institutions matter in policy-making. Political systems shape power structures and interac- tion patterns between actors in decision-making processes. Although the social fabric of decision-makers’ interactions is key to successful policy-making, it remains unclear which relational structures can typically be found across political systems. This paper uncov- ers the ways in which macro-political institutions shape political processes by adopting a network approach.
We analyze differences in power structures and interaction patterns across four different decision-making networks in German and Swiss consensual-federal, French majoritarian- unitary, and hybrid Dutch consensual-unitary democracies. We surveyed 199 state and non-state actors on their network interactions in decision-making processes on water pro- tection. We fit exponential random graph models and calculate predicted probabilities to compare the structural composition of those four networks. Results show that our cases of consensus democracies tend to institutionalize neighborhoods of networks where several network members are central and share power. Actors tend to exhibit close-knit collab- orative interactions and to seek compromise with opponents. Our case of a majoritarian democracy shows power concentration with few highly centralized actors. The competitive style of policy-making restrains access to competitors, thereby limiting the need to interact and search for compromises with opponents.
The paper uncovers how political structures translate into network interactions during decision-making processes and ultimately produce social environments that produce (or fail to produce) policy outputs.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences
03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science

UniBE Contributor:

Metz, Florence Alessa, Brandenberger, Laurence


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science




Laurence Brandenberger

Date Deposited:

22 Jun 2018 10:41

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:15




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback