Party size and policy outcomes: An empirical analysis of taxation in democracies

  • Andrew C. Gould


Taxation varies widely among democracies. Yet scholars disagree whether differences in political institutions help produce the variation. This article identifies topdown and bottom-up mechanisms by which political institutions are thought to influence taxation. It then combines political and economic data on more than 50 democracies to evaluate the impact of political institutions on government revenues. Cross-sectional and pooled time series analyses that include controls for economic conditions and partisan ideologies of governments confirm an indirect impact of these institutions: there is a curvilinear relationship between the size of political parties in a democracy and the tax revenues collected. Yet the effect of party size on policy outcomes is limited to a subset of democracies. The article opens new paths for research on the roles of electoral, constitutional, legislative, and party institutions in democratic policy making around the world.


Comparative International Development Median Voter Veto Player Party Size Large Party 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer 2001

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  • Andrew C. Gould

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