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date: 05 July 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the much-debated topic of intra-party democracy (IPD). It reviews normative questions concerning whether democracy requires parties’ decision-making procedures to be as similar as possible to those of national constitutions. It also considers evidences about the practical impact of the rules that parties choose, including whether rules which claim to empower grass-roots party supporters actually have such effects. As the chapter makes clear, there are different variants of IPD, assembly based and plebiscitary versions. Yet, despite growing scholarly interest in how party rules affect more general political outcomes, there is still much disagreement about what it means for a political party to be internally democratic, and about how such democracy (or its lack) may affect the nature or quality of representation in electoral democracies.

Keywords: intra-party democracy, participation, party members, political parties, representation, variants of IPD

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