Legislative Social Networks - The Case of the Swedish Parliament
Department of Sociology Stockholm University Stockholm, Sweden
The structures of legislative networks have mostly been studied with regard to the American, biparty case. The ongoing-research reported here studies the structural features of a multi-party legislature, through the collaboration-networks among Swedish parliamentarians. Members of the Swedish "Riksdag" are linked by their collaboration on several types of legislative proposals, with a certain emphasis on cross-party, and cross-block initiatives. Furthermore, differences regarding the networks of legislative initiatives between the current (2006-) institutional conditions, characterized by a right wing-liberal majority-government, are contrasted with a long string of previous periods dominated by social democratic minority-governments. The significance of institutional circumstances for establishing parliamentary collaboration networks is thus explored. Exponential random graph (p*) models are used, and the properties of collaboration networks are explored on multiple network levels. The results have implications for our understanding of the roles of collaborative networks in multi-party political assemblies.