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From Historical Institutionalism to Discursive Institutionalism: Explaining Institutional Change in Political Economy

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Abstract:

To explain change in comparative political economy, a ‘discursive institutionalist’ approach focused on ideas and discourse is a necessary complement to older ‘new institutionalist’ approaches. Historical institutionalist approaches have difficulty explaining change, tend to be static and equilibrium-focused; and even where they get beyond this through accounts of incremental change, they are more descriptive than they are explanatory of change. The turn to rational choice institutionalist approaches for agency, for ‘micro-foundations’ to historical institutionalist ‘macro-patterns,’ also does not solve the problems of historical institutionalism. A turn to discursive institutionalism could. Using examples of reforms in national political economies and welfare states, the paper illustrates how ideas and discourse help explain the dynamics of change (and continuity).

Most Common Document Word Stems:

institut (229), idea (177), chang (145), discours (96), polit (91), discurs (86), histor (83), actor (78), polici (70), institutionalist (57), interest (48), press (46), new (46), power (44), explain (44), public (42), also (41), 2006 (38), communic (37), may (37), agent (36),

Author's Keywords:

political economy, discursive institutionalism, ideas, discourse, historical institutionalism, welfare state
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Name: APSA 2008 Annual Meeting
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http://www.apsanet.org


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MLA Citation:

Schmidt, Vivien. "From Historical Institutionalism to Discursive Institutionalism: Explaining Institutional Change in Political Economy" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the APSA 2008 Annual Meeting, Hynes Convention Center, Boston, Massachusetts, Aug 28, 2008 <Not Available>. 2014-12-01 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p278339_index.html>

APA Citation:

Schmidt, V. A. , 2008-08-28 "From Historical Institutionalism to Discursive Institutionalism: Explaining Institutional Change in Political Economy" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the APSA 2008 Annual Meeting, Hynes Convention Center, Boston, Massachusetts Online <APPLICATION/PDF>. 2014-12-01 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p278339_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: To explain change in comparative political economy, a ‘discursive institutionalist’ approach focused on ideas and discourse is a necessary complement to older ‘new institutionalist’ approaches. Historical institutionalist approaches have difficulty explaining change, tend to be static and equilibrium-focused; and even where they get beyond this through accounts of incremental change, they are more descriptive than they are explanatory of change. The turn to rational choice institutionalist approaches for agency, for ‘micro-foundations’ to historical institutionalist ‘macro-patterns,’ also does not solve the problems of historical institutionalism. A turn to discursive institutionalism could. Using examples of reforms in national political economies and welfare states, the paper illustrates how ideas and discourse help explain the dynamics of change (and continuity).


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