Party Groups and Policy Positions in the European Parliament

33 Pages Posted: 7 Aug 2006  

Gail McElroy

Trinity College - Department of Political Science

Kenneth Benoit

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE); Trinity College Dublin

Date Written: November 2005

Abstract

As the legislative body of the European Union, the European Parliament groups 732 elected representatives from over 170 national political parties from 25 member states. At the EP level, these members are affiliated with seven major party groups representing distinct policy positions. In this paper we provide precise estimates of these policy positions based on expert surveys in addition to characterizing the dimensionality of policy competition in the EP. Our results suggest not only that party groups have identifiable and differentiated positions on multiple issues of policy, but also that these positions group broadly into two orthogonal dimensions: one consisting of classic left-right social and economic issues, and the other related to the powers and scope of EU institutions.

Keywords: Party Competition, Policy Positions, European Parliament, Expert Surveys

Suggested Citation

McElroy, Gail and Benoit, Kenneth, Party Groups and Policy Positions in the European Parliament (November 2005). IIIS Discussion Paper No. 101. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=922253 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.922253

Gail McElroy

Trinity College - Department of Political Science ( email )

Office: CG5.08
Dublin 2
Ireland
+353 1 608 1029 (Phone)

Kenneth Benoit (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Trinity College Dublin ( email )

3 College Green
Trinity College
Dublin, 2
Ireland

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