This book explores the ways in which representative democracy works in two neighbouring collections of European states: the Nordic (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) and the Baltic (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). Starting from a Nordic vantage point, contributors explore the extent to which aspects of politics function similarly or dissimilarly across the two groups of democratic states, acknowledging the differences in models of democracy that occur within each group. Authors explore the possibility that some of the apparently successful institutional features of Nordic politics have somehow influenced politics in the Baltic states, despite the considerable contextual differences between the two groups. The Nordic-Baltic comparison is particularly worthy of study, given the comparative stability of the Nordic democracies and the half century of occupation by a totalitarian dictatorship that the Baltic states endured. The central, guiding questions are: how does political representation work in countries that have a lot in common, but also a few significant contextual dissimilarities; and what, if any, relationships between the respective styles of democracy can be identified? Using a variety of theories, perspectives and methods, the empirical studies that populate the book seek to offer reflections on these questions.
'The book as a whole is an excellent collection of essays - each contributing both to the field of comparative analysis overall and also to their own separate research inquiries. There will be a different audience for each individual essay, but those focussing on domestic party politics in Europe will find these essays highly thought-provoking.' LSE Review of Books
Contents: A Nordic model of democracy? Political representation in Northern Europe, Nicholas Aylott; Between flawed and full democracy: twenty years of Baltic independence, Kjetil Duvold; The emergence of Conservative parties in the Baltic States: new parties, party entrepreneurs and transnational influence, Karl Magnus Johansson; Ever more inclusive? Candidate selection in North European democracies, Nicholas Aylott, JÄnis Ikstens and Emelie Lilliefeldt; The diffusion of party positions: policy positions moving from the Nordic to the Baltic States, Detlef Jahn; The Nordic model and Estonian political discourse, Kadri Simm and KÃ¼lliki Seppel; Conclusions: towards a new North European democracy?, Nicholas Aylott; Index.