Cabinet Reshuffles in Parliamentary Democracies: A Typology and Framework for Comparative Analysis

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  • Ludger Helms
  • Michelangelo Vercesi
While previous research on cabinet reshuffles has offered valuable distinctions in terms of their timing, other defining features of reshuffles have largely escaped comparative inquiry. This article seeks to develop a more complete comparative assessment of cabinet reshuffles in parliamentary systems that reaches beyond the ‘classic’ samples of Westminster democracies. We seek to distinguish different ‘types’ of cabinet reshuffles that account for several key features, namely: the mode, the scope, the key principal and the party dimension of reshuffles. The usefulness and validity of this typology are demonstrated by a comparative assessment of cabinet reshuffles in four major West European parliamentary democracies. The conceptual distinctions and related empirical observations offered in this article should prove valuable, in particular when it comes to gauging the likely political and policy effects of different types of cabinet reshuffles, and should, ultimately, provide the foundations of a theory of comparative cabinet reshuffles.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGovernment and Opposition
Number of pages22
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19.07.2022

    Research areas

  • cabinet governance, government, ministerial turnover, personnel change, prime ministers, Westminster
  • Politics