Johannes Lindvall

Johannes Lindvall


Johannes Lindvall

Public opinion, party politics, and the welfare state


  • Johannes Lindvall
  • David Rueda

Summary, in English

This chapter examines the long-run relationship between public opinion, party politics, and the welfare state. It argues that when large parties receive a clear signal concerning the median voter’s position on the welfare state, vote-seeking motivations dominate and the large parties in the party system converge on the position of the median voter. When the position of the median voter is more difficult to discern, however, policy-seeking motivations dominate, and party positions diverge. This argument implies that the effects of government partisanship on welfare state policy are more ambiguous than generally understood. The countries covered in the chapter are Denmark, France, Germany, Norway and the United Kingdom (going back to the 1960s). The number of observations is (necessarily) limited, but the diverse cases illustrate a common electoral dynamic centered around the position of the median voter.


  • Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)


  • Office-seeking
  • Policy-seeking
  • Political parties
  • Public opinion
  • Welfare state




  • ISBN: 9780198807971