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Comparative Politics

Comparative Politics

First Edition
Edited by:

July 2009 | 344 pages | SAGE South Asia
This book provides a distinctive new introduction to the study of comparative politics at undergraduate level. Rich in case study material and global in coverage, Comparative Politics sets out the basic theoretical and methodological foundations for studying different political systems as well as the key structures and actors of which they are comprised.

Part I explores the nature of comparative methodology and introduces students to the major theoretical paradigms that seek to explain the operation of institutions in democratic states and facilitate comparison across different political systems.

Part 2 examines the institutional structures of the modern state, outlining the key features such as the electoral systems and territorial and functional divisions of government across a range of modern states.

Part 3 analyses the role of key actors, such as voters and parties, interest groups and social movements, the bureaucracy and the judiciary.

This book will be an essential primer for students of comparative government and politics as well as introductory courses in political science concepts and methods. 
Judith Bara
Mark Pennington
Theories, Institutions and Comparative Politics
Judith Bara
Methodologies for Comparative Politics
Brendan O'Duffy
The Nation-state and Nationalism
Jocelyn A. J. Evans
Electoral Systems
Catherine Needham
Legislatures–Executive Relations
Mark Pennington
The Bureaucracy
David Robertson
The Courts
Brendan O'Duffy
The Territorial Dimension
Judith Bara
Voters, Parties and Participation
Mark Pennington
Interest Groups
David S. Bell
Political Leadership: The Long Road to Theory
Afterword: Comparative Politics and the Three Approaches Revisited

'Bara and Pennington’s edited volume successfully fills a huge void in the market for introductory textbooks to comparative politics which previously offered either descriptions of political processes and systems or overviews of the methodology of comparative analysis. By applying major political science theories to overviews of the core elements of political systems, the authors both enhance our understanding of these elements and provide readers an excellent introduction to comparative explanation' - Dr David Howarth, University of Edinburgh


'What is distinctive about this authoritative and comprehensive book on comparative politics is the way in which it is underpinned throughout by a theoretical analysis centred on a new institutionalist approach' - Professor Wyn Grant, University of Warwick


'This is a most useful book. Teachers of comparative politics often scramble around, with out-of-date textbooks and photocopies of more or less compatible articles. Here is a new book that gives an up-to-date, comprehensive and systematic introduction to the major strands of institutional thought and applies these to the major institutions, processes and policy areas. It will be a great help for many of us, academics and students alike'

Peter Kurrild-Klitgaard
Professor of Comparative Politics, University of Copenhagen

'Comparative Politics takes a fresh and original approach to the field… it examines the role of structures, rules and norms in regulating the individual and collective behaviour of political actors. Each chapter provides a critical bibliography and key questions which will be particularly useful for students approaching Comparative Politics for the first time. Altogether this is a comprehensive and useful read which I warmly recommend'

Ian Budge
Professor Emiritus Professor of Government, University of Essex

Judith Linda Bara

My main research interest relates to the study of changing orientations of political parties, with particular reference to ideology and policy. Much of this is based on the content analysis of official party documentation, notably manifestos and platforms from both British and comparative perspectives. I am a principal researcher in the Comparative Manifestos Project and hold an honorary Research Fellowship in Government at the University of Essex More About Author

Mark Pennington

Mark's research interests lie at the intersection of politics, philosophy and economics with an emphasis on the implications of bounded rationality and imperfect knowledge for institutional design. He has a particular interest in the works of Hayek, public choice theory and related elements of the classical liberal tradition. His earlier work focussed on the political economy of environmental planning and regulation and explored the potential for property rights approaches to environmental problems. His more recent work has explored the implications of bounded rationality in the context of contemporary theories of deliberative democracy.... More About Author

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ISBN: 9788132102922