Coalition Mood in European Parliamentary Democracies

Author(s)
Michael Imre, Alejandro Ecker, Thomas M. Meyer, Wolfgang C. Müller
Abstract

The success and longevity of coalition governments depends on the ability to keep conflicts between coalition members at bay. The risk of such conflicts is often assessed by drawing on proxy measures, such as the ideological heterogeneity among government parties. This article presents a new approach to measuring the atmosphere between government parties. The 'coalition mood' is a time-varying measure that draws on applause patterns between coalition partners during legislative debates. The article exemplifies the measurement approach based on automated analyses of over 105,000 plenary debates in Germany and Austria. The article then assesses the measure's face, concurrent and predictive validity. It finds the measure well aligned with qualitative evidence, shows that the coalition mood is correlated with poll ratings of the government parties and helps to predict the duration of legislative processes. The conclusion highlights future applications of the coalition mood for research on coalition politics and public policy.

Organisation(s)
Department of Government
External organisation(s)
Universität Mannheim, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Journal
British Journal of Political Science
Pages
1-18
ISSN
0007-1234
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007123421000739
Publication date
2021
Peer reviewed
Yes
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
506014 Comparative politics
Keywords
ASJC Scopus subject areas
Political Science and International Relations
Portal url
https://ucris.univie.ac.at/portal/en/publications/coalition-mood-in-european-parliamentary-democracies(b271e5cd-8fdc-483d-a82c-47c8060dbb8f).html