Theories of government formation and the 1996 general election in Japan

Junko Kato, Michael Laver

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This paper takes a number of theories that have been used to analyse government formation in West European parliamentary democracies and applies them to the government formation process in Japan after the 1996 general election. These models underline the continuing importance of the LDP in the government formation process, despite the loss of its overall majority. The application of government formation models to the Japanese case also highlights the weakness of the typical assumption that sees parties as unitary actors. The paper thus concludes with some speculations as to how this assumption might usefully be relaxed to incorporate party factions, splits and fusions and thereby generate more dynamic models of the making and breaking of governments.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)229-252
    Number of pages24
    JournalParty Politics
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - 1998


    • Cabinets
    • Coalitions
    • Competition
    • Elections
    • Japan
    • Party
    • Policy

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Sociology and Political Science


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