Skip to content
Publicly Available Published by De Gruyter Oldenbourg May 18, 2016

How the Mechanism of Dynamic Representation Affects Policy Change and Stability

  • Simon Tobias Franzmann and Johannes Schmitt
From the journal Analyse & Kritik


In politics, we often observe stasis when, at first sight, no reason exists for such policy blockades. In contrast., we sometimes see policy change when one would expect blockades resulting from veto points or countervailing majorities. How can we explain these contradictory results concerning policy stability? In order to solve this theoretical puzzle, we develop an agent-based model (ABM). We combine established models of veto player theory (Tsebelis 2002: Ganghof-Bräuninger 2006) with the findings of political sociology and party competition. By aggregating previous party-level findings, we show that dynamic representation (Stimson et. al. 1995) provides an additional mechanism that can explain these macro-level outcomes. Parties behaving responsively to their electorate do not automatically guarantee perfect responsivity on the party system level. Further, if opposition parties also fear punishment by the electorate for government inaction, the opposition behaves more accommodatingly than previous approaches have predicted.

Published Online: 2016-05-18
Published in Print: 2016-05-01

© 2016 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston

Downloaded on 6.12.2023 from
Scroll to top button