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Elitist Theory and Policy Making

Rafael Benevides Barbosa Gomes

Texas A&M University - George Bush School of Government and Public Service

December 15, 2009

One of the core assumptions of the elitist theory is that a small number of elite groups run the government and other power institutions in the United States. If one is to analyze the policy process based on that assumption, it is inevitable to say that policies are then determined by those elite groups, thus reflecting their interests1. In this paper, I will try to analyze that relationship and demonstrate through example how elitist theory can be used to capture important elements of our political system, including the common background of members of the power elite. In addition, I will address some of the limitations associated with the theory.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 9

Keywords: Elitism, elitist theory, policy making, democracy

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Date posted: December 21, 2009  

Suggested Citation

Gomes, Rafael Benevides Barbosa, Elitist Theory and Policy Making (December 15, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1526043 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1526043

Contact Information

Rafael Benevides Barbosa Gomes (Contact Author)
Texas A&M University - George Bush School of Government and Public Service ( email )
College Station, TX 77843
United States
HOME PAGE: http://bush.tamu.edu
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