Party competition in English local government: An empirical analysis of English councils, 1974-1994

George Boyne, Rachel Ashworth

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Party competition is an important mechanism for securing responsiveness and accountability in local government. Two measures of competition are identified and applied to all local party systems in England: dominance, which refers to the strength of the ruling party in the present; and volatility, which concerns changes in party strength in the past. The evidence shows that, on either measure, competition is strongest in the non-metropolitan counties and weakest in the London boroughs and metropolitan districts. By contrast, the two measures yield contradictory longitudinal results on the extent of competition: dominance has generally declined, but so has volatility. Thus conclusions on temporal trends in competition depend on the relative effects of dominance and volatility on local politicians' behaviour.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-142
Number of pages14
JournalPolicy and Politics
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1997

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