Explaining extremity in the foreign policies of parliamentary democracies

Ryan K. Beasley, Juliet Kaarbo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Why do multiparty cabinets in parliamentary democracies produce more extreme foreign policies than single-party cabinets? Our paper argues that particular institutional and psychological dynamics are responsible for extremity. We test this argument using a global events dataset incorporating foreign policy behaviors of numerous multiparty and single-party governments. We find that more parties and weak parliaments promote extremity in coalitions, but parliamentary strength has the opposite effect for single-party governments. This study challenges existing expectations about the impact of democratic institutions on foreign policy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729-740
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Studies Quarterly
Issue number4
Early online date22 Nov 2014
Publication statusPublished - 11 Dec 2014

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