Structure and Evolution of a European Parliament via a Network and Correlation Analysis

15 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2016

See all articles by Elena Puccio

Elena Puccio

University of Palermo

Antti Pajala

University of Turku

Jyrki Piilo

University of Turku

Michele Tumminello

University of Palermo; Carnegie Mellon University - Department of Social and Decision Sciences

Date Written: January 25, 2016

Abstract

We present a study of the network of relationships among elected members of the Finnish parliament, based on a quantitative analysis of initiative co-signatures, and its evolution over 16 years. To understand the structure of the parliament, we constructed a statistically validated network of members, based on the similarity between the patterns of initiatives they signed. We looked for communities within the network and characterized them in terms of members’ attributes, such as electoral district and party. To gain insight on the nested structure of communities, we constructed a hierarchical tree of members from the correlation matrix. Afterwards, we studied parliament dynamics yearly, with a focus on correlations within and between parties, by also distinguishing between government and opposition. Finally, we investigated the role played by specific individuals, at a local level. In particular, whether they act as proponents who gather consensus, or as signers. Our results provide a quantitative background to current theories in political science. From a methodological point of view, our network approach has proven able to highlight both local and global features of a complex social system.

Suggested Citation

Puccio, Elena and Pajala, Antti and Piilo, Jyrki and Tumminello, Michele, Structure and Evolution of a European Parliament via a Network and Correlation Analysis (January 25, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2731304 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2731304

Elena Puccio (Contact Author)

University of Palermo ( email )

Viale delle Scienza
Palermo, 90128
Italy

Antti Pajala

University of Turku ( email )

Turku, 20014
Finland

Jyrki Piilo

University of Turku ( email )

Turku Centre for Quantum Physics
Department of Physics and Astronomy
FIN-20014 TURKU
Finland

Michele Tumminello

University of Palermo ( email )

Viale delle Scienza
Palermo, Palermo 90128
Italy

Carnegie Mellon University - Department of Social and Decision Sciences ( email )

Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

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