The Palgrave Handbook of Political Elites

  • Heinrich Best
  • John Higley

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxi
  2. Heinrich Best, John Higley
    Pages 1-6
  3. Theories of Political Elites

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 7-7
    2. Jan Pakulski
      Pages 9-16
    3. Jan Pakulski
      Pages 17-24
    4. András Körösényi
      Pages 41-52
    5. Ursula Hoffmann-Lange
      Pages 53-68
  4. Research Methods for Studying Elites

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 69-69
    2. Elena Semenova
      Pages 71-77
    3. Ursula Hoffmann-Lange
      Pages 79-92
    4. Juan Rodríguez-Teruel, Jean-Pascal Daloz
      Pages 93-113
    5. Sebastian Jäckle, Matthew Kerby
      Pages 115-133
    6. Franziska Barbara Keller
      Pages 135-152
  5. Political Elite Patterns in the World’s Main Regions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 153-153
    2. John Higley
      Pages 155-159
    3. Philip Oldenburg
      Pages 203-223
    4. William Case
      Pages 225-240

About this book


This handbook presents a comprehensive view of the current theory and research surrounding political elites, which is now a pivotal subject for academic study and public discourse. In 40 chapters by leading scholars, it displays the field’s richness and diversity. The handbook is organized in six sections, each introduced by a co-editor, focusing on theories about political elites, methods for studying them, their main structural and behavioral patterns worldwide, the differentiation and integration of political elite sectors, elite attributes and resources, and the dilemmas of political elites in this century. Forty years since Robert Putnam’s landmark Comparative Study of Political Elites, this handbook is an indispensable resource for scholars and students engaged in the study of this vibrant field.


elite theories Political Elites in the Democratic West Political Elites in Authoritarian Regimes Political Elites in Totalitarian Regimes parliamentary elites elitist politics media elites political power of elites Autonomy of Political Elites political power of economic elites elitist networks elite network analysis classical elite theory neo-elite theory political authority transational elitism

Editors and affiliations

  • Heinrich Best
    • 1
  • John Higley
    • 2
  1. 1.Friedrich-Schiller-UniversityJenaGermany
  2. 2.University of Texas at AustinAustin, TXUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, London
  • eBook Packages Political Science and International Studies
  • Print ISBN 978-1-137-51903-0
  • Online ISBN 978-1-137-51904-7
  • About this book