Latin American Societies

Politics and Political Elites in Latin America

Challenges and Trends

Editors: Alcántara Sáez, Manuel, García Montero, Mercedes, Rivas Pérez, Cristina (Eds.)

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  • Explores data gathered by 9,000 personal interviews with Latin American parliamentary representatives conducted since 1994 with special attention to gender
  • Examines parliamentarian elites’ attitudes towards issues such as political ambition, political trust, satisfaction with democracy, clientelism and the quality of democracy
  • Analyzes how Latin American parliamentarian elites see the influence of China and the United States in their countries’ national politics
  • Presents in-depth studies of seven national cases which are representative of regional heterogeneity: Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama and Uruguay
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About this book

This book presents in-depth analyses of the data gathered for 26 years by the Political Elites of Latin America project (PELA), the most comprehensive database about the topic in the world. Since 1994, PELA has conducted around 9,000 personal interviews with representative samples of the Legislative Powers of 18 Latin American countries, generating a unique resource for the study of political elites in a comparative perspective. Now, this contributed volume brings together studies that dig into the data gathered by PELA to discuss important topics related to the challenges faced by representative democracy in Latin America.  
After an introductory chapter that presents the potential of the PELA database, the book is structured in two parts. The first addresses in eight chapters important aspects of representative democracy such as political ambition, political trust, satisfaction with democracy, clientelism and the quality of democracy. It then discusses three relevant issues in Latin American political dynamics such as executive-legislative relations, women's participation as representatives, and the meaning of China and the United States in national politics.
The second part addresses in five chapters studies of seven national cases that are representative of regional heterogeneity. These chapters aim to examine parliamentarian elites’ attitudes in different political systems with regard to a variety of relevant issues such as institutional trust, satisfaction with democracy, Executive-Legislative relations, clientelism, and gender questions. Furthermore, these chapters intend to evince the evolution of such attitudes in the course of the last two decades.
Politics and Political Elites in Latin America: Challenges and Trends will be of interest to scholars and students of comparative politics in general and, more particularly, to those interested in the challenges faced by representative democracy not only in Latin America, but in many parts of the world.  

About the authors

Manuel Alcántara Sáez is Full Professor at the University of Salamanca and member of the Instituto de Iberoamérica, Spain, and director of the Political Elites in Latin America project (PELA) at the same institution. He holds a PhD in Political Science from Universidad Complutense (Madrid). He has been visiting fellow at the Kellogg Institute and at the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) and visiting professor, among others, at Georgetown University, Tulane University, IHEAL in Paris, ScienPo Lille, Kobe University, FLACSO Ecuador and UPB in Medellín (Colombia). He has also been Director of the Institute of Iberoamerica at the University of Salamanca (1994-2007), general Secretary of Latin American Political Science Association (2002-09), vice Provost of International Relations of the University of Salamanca (2007-09) and Director of FLACSO Spain (2014-18). His field research concerns "Parliament Elites in Latin America", “Parliamentary Performance in Latin America”, “Organization and internal structure of Latin American Political Parties” and “Professionalization of Politicians”. His most recent books include "El oficio de político" (2020, 2nd edition) and "Sistemas Políticos de América Latina" (2013, 4th edition) and, as (co)editor, Politics and Politicians in Latin America (2008), "Algo más que presidentes: El papel del Poder Legislativo en América Latina" (2010), "Elecciones y política en América Latina" (2009-2011) (2013), "Elecciones y cambios de elites en América Latina, 2014 y 2015" (2016). "Política y democracia: Anversos y reversos" (2016), "Elecciones y partidos en América Latina en el cambio de ciclo" (2018), "Presidents and Democracy in Latin America" (2018), "América Latina vota (2017-2019)" (2020).
Mercedes García Montero is Professor in the area of Political Science and member of the Instituto de Iberoamérica at the University of Salamanca, Spain, and co-director of the Political Elites in Latin America Project (PELA) at the same institution. She has also been Director of the Instituto de Iberoamérica at the University of Salamanca (2015-2019). She holds a PhD in Political Science and Administration, Master in Latin American Studies and Degree in Sociology from the University of Salamanca. Specialist in Applied Social Research and Data Analysis, by the Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas (CIS). She is a researcher at the Instituto de Iberoamérica of the University of Salamanca and has published various works on the Legislative Power in Latin America, including the books “Presidentes y Parlamentos ¿quién controla la actividad legislativa en América Latina?” (2010) and "Funciones, procedimientos y escenarios: un análisis del poder legislativo en América Latina" (2005), written with Manuel Alcántara and Francisco Sánchez López. His lines of research include political institutions, executive-legislative relations, political elites and parliaments in Latin America. 
Cristina Rivas Pérez is Assistant Professor in the area of Political Science at the University of Salamanca, Spain, and a researcher at the Instituto de Iberoamérica. She is manager of the Political Elites in Latin America Project (PELA) at the same institution. She holds a PhD in Political Science and Administration, a PhD in Multivariate Statistics, a Master in Latin American Studies, and a Degree in Sociology, all from the University of Salamanca, and a Degree in Data Analysis from the Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas (CIS).  Her lines of research are linked to the study of political elites, democracy, public opinion and research methodology in the social sciences. She has participated in research projects related to parliamentary elites and democratization processes in Latin America and the functioning of political institutions in the region.

Table of contents (14 chapters)

Table of contents (14 chapters)
  • PELA-USAL: A Methodological Tool for the Study of Elites

    Pages 3-26

    Barragán, Mélany (et al.)

  • Political Ambition in Latin America

    Pages 27-49

    Kernecker, Theresa

  • Political Trust of Parliamentary Elites in Latin America

    Pages 51-76

    Rivas Pérez, Cristina (et al.)

  • Satisfaction with Democracy in Latin America: Perspectives from Political Elites and Citizens

    Pages 77-96

    Martínez Rosón, Mar (et al.)

  • Shopping for Votes in Latin America: When Do Legislators Engage in Vote-Buying Practices?

    Pages 97-127

    Corral, Margarita (et al.)

Buy this book

eBook $89.00
price for Brazil
  • ISBN 978-3-030-51584-3
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $119.99
price for Brazil
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Politics and Political Elites in Latin America
Book Subtitle
Challenges and Trends
Editors
  • Manuel Alcántara Sáez
  • Mercedes García Montero
  • Cristina Rivas Pérez
Series Title
Latin American Societies
Copyright
2020
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-51584-3
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-51584-3
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-51583-6
Series ISSN
2730-5538
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
X, 353
Number of Illustrations
50 b/w illustrations, 32 illustrations in colour
Topics