Vol. 14, No. 3


Gerti Sqapi, Klementin Mile State Capture, Party Patronage and Unfair Electoral Processes: The Typical Case of Election Conduct in Albania

This paper aims to analyse the relationship that exists between state capture, party patronage, and the conduct of electoral processes in the settings of post-communist countries, of which Albania is one. A characteristic of the political developments of the transition period in many post-communist countries has been the phenomenon of state capture, which has occurred mainly through the endemic party patronage and politicization of state institutions. The phenomenon of state capture by the ruling political parties has had a negative conditional impact on the conduct of competitive, free and fair elections in these countries, leading to distrust regarding the credibility and integrity of the process. This study argues that phenomena such as state capture and extensive party patronage as informal practices/ mechanisms in the hands of the ruling political parties affect the creation of a skewed playing field and the production of hyper-incumbency advantages in holding electoral contests between political parties, making the possibility of political power rotations difficult. Albania, in the case of its last parliamentary elections, held on 25th April 2021, constitutes the case study (Section IV) to which the theoretical framework of the paper is applied, by identifying the informal practices and methods through state capture that the ruling political party used to provide structural, institutional, and financial advantages in its favour regarding elections.

Tomáš Jarmara České politické strany ve vládách 1992–2021: distribuce ministerských úřadů, obsazení postu premiéra, typ koalice

The aim of this paper is to capture the participation of political parties in the governments of the Czech Republic in the years 1992 to 2021, the distribution of Seats in the Government, occupation of the Prime Minister’s Office and the type of coalitions formed. The study presented is theoretically grounded in the office-seeking approach to the study of coalitions and uses comparative and statistical methods. The data are analysed and interpreted in relation to the changes and development trends of the participation of political parties in the government. The case study concludes that the dynamics of the transformation of government coalitions can be divided into three stages. The first stage is represented by two decades of alternating dominant parties with a clear right-wing orientation: the ODS and the CSSD, which had a prime minister’s office, a share of more than 50% in the government and their coalition partners were smaller political parties. The second stage since 2010 is characterized by the weakening of the dominant parties and the emergence of more proportional government coalitions, where the strongest parties in the coalitions have less than a 50% share in the governing seats. The third final stage since 2017 is characterized by the arrival of a new dominant party: ANO gaining the position of prime minister, and for the first time by the formation of only a two-member government coalition.



Attila Vincze Review CSINK, Lóránt; TRÓCSÁNYI, László (2022, eds.). Comparative Constitutionalism in Central Europe. Miskolc-Budapest: Central European Publishing. ISBN 978-615-6474-02-5.