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© 2020

Party Funding and Corruption

Book

Part of the Political Corruption and Governance book series (PCG)

About this book

Introduction

This book systematically explores the relationship between party funding and corruption, and addresses fundamental concerns in the continued consideration of how democracy should function. The book analyses whether parties funded primarily through private donations are necessarily more corrupt than those funded by the state, and whether different types of corruption are evident in different funding regimes. Drawing on a comparison of Great Britain and Denmark, the author argues that levels of state subsidy are, in fact, unrelated to the type of corruption found. Subsidies are not a cure for corruption or, importantly, perceived corruption, so if they are to be introduced or sustained, this should be done for other reasons. Subsidies can, for example, be justified on grounds of public utility. Meanwhile, anti-corruption measures should focus on other regulations, but even then we should not expect such measures to impact on perceptions of corruption in the short term.

Sam Power is Lecturer in Corruption Analysis at the University of Sussex, UK. Previously he was Associate Lecturer in Politics at the University of Exeter and Research Associate at the Sir Bernard Crick Centre for the Public Understanding of Politics, University of Sheffield. Sam has written extensively on issues related to the financing of politics in both academic and non-academic publications and regularly provides expert interviews and analyses on TV, on the radio, and online. 

Keywords

party funding party politics corruption comparative politics new institutionalism British political history Danish political history representative democracy corruption and governance funding regime perceived corruption anti-corruption measures corruption and democracy

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PoliticsUniversity of SussexBrightonUK

About the authors

Sam Power is Lecturer in Corruption Analysis at the University of Sussex, UK. Previously he was Associate Lecturer in Politics at the University of Exeter and Research Associate at the Sir Bernard Crick Centre for the Public Understanding of Politics, University of Sheffield. Sam has written extensively on issues related to the financing of politics in both academic and non-academic publications and regularly provides expert interviews and analyses on TV, on the radio, and online. 

Bibliographic information

Reviews

“This well-written book constitutes the ‘state of the art’ in a field that is increasingly important for the understanding of the challenges confronting democracy in the age of populism and widespread political apathy. Though the study focuses on Europe , the book is important not only for readers seeking to understand the complexities  of state funding of parties but for anyone interested in the effort to shore up democratic regimes all over the world.” (Jonathan Mendilow, Professor, Political Science, Rider University, USA, and Chair, IPSA Research Council, Political Finance and Political Corruption)

 

“Sam Power has done a brilliant job of capturing, unraveling and explaining the complex nature of party funding and its impact on the very foundations of democracy. In this era of seemingly endless upheaval – from the emergence of a ‘new right’ populism to declining rates of participation, this book gives the context and framing necessary to understand the role of financing in this period of democratic uncertainty.” (Kyle Taylor, Founder and Director of Fair Vote UK, Secretariat for the APPG on Electoral Campaigning Transparency)

 

“This is a fascinating book, which makes an excellent contribution to the study of party finance, both by useful international comparison, and by carefully showing why discussions of party finance and corruption need careful and precise definitions in order to be analytically meaningful. This book marks a real advance in both the party finance and corruption literatures.” (Justin Fisher, Professor of Political Science, Brunel University London, UK)