The Higher the Better? A Comparative Analysis of Sociodemographic Characteristics and Human Capital of German Federal Government Members
German Politics & Society, Vol. 32, No. 4, pp. 21-38, 2014
Posted: 5 Mar 2016
Date Written: December 1, 2014
Are the highest politicians better qualified than their peers? In this article, we analyze differences between chancellors, vice chancellors, and ministers of the inner or residual cabinets of the German federal governments between 1949 and 2009 with respect to their social backgrounds and educational, economic, as well as political human capital. Different statistical methods reveal no clear primacy of chancellors or vice chancellors over other members of government. Interestingly, inner cabinets have higher qualifications than residual cabinets, as well as partly chancellors and vice chancellors.
Keywords: German Federal Government, Human Capital, Leaders, Politicians, Sociodemographic Characteristics
JEL Classification: C81, J24, L88, M53, O52
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