Programmatic Europeanization revisited: The role of EP election proximity, EU support and Eastern European patterns
CEU Center for Policy Studies
Place of Publication:
CPS Working Papers
Parties emphasis of European themes in their manifestos varies to a great deal between countries. However, except for few papers which present descriptive evidence as to why this happens, there is practically no literature which provides a systematic explanation of the variation in issue emphasis across countries. In this paper, we seek to address this gap in the literature and analyse the determinants of parties’ emphasis of European issues by using a unique dataset containing party manifesto data. We show that the temporal proximity to a European Parliament election decreases the amount of space which parties allocate in their manifestos to EU related issues. Furthermore, consistent with previous findings in the literature, we find that Eastern European parties dedicate more space to EU issues, an effect which might be driven by the more recent EU experience of these parties. Surprisingly, we find no effect of party’s voters support for the EU or the level of the absorption rates of European Structural and Investment Funds on parties’ emphasis of EU themes in their manifestos.