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Pathways to Power: The Role of Preparliamentary Careers and Political Human Capital in the Obtainment of Cabinet Positions.

  • Academic Journal
  • Legislative Studies Quarterly; May2020, Vol. 45 Issue 2, p207-252, 46p
  • Understanding the rise to power is central to the study of politics. Yet, we still know little about the career paths of influential politicians like ministers. The literature assumes that dominant preparliamentary occupations (e.g., lawyer, local offices) predict promotion. We move beyond this potential ecological fallacy and suggest a perspective that emphasizes the role of gatekeepers and political human capital like national political experience and education. We leverage complete career data of all Dutch MPs (N = 1,263; 1945–2012) and study their (N = 4,966) opportunities to obtain a cabinet position. A sequence analysis with fuzzy clustering reveals eight career paths in both the professional and political domain. A logistic regression analysis that uses these career paths as predictors shows that prominent occupations and communicative experience do not constitute the pathway to ministerial power; a university education and preparliamentary national political experience do. Findings support the value of political human‐capital theory to understand political promotion. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
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Copyright of Legislative Studies Quarterly is the property of Wiley-Blackwell and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

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