Legislators' Patterns of Cooperation

Osnat Akirav


This study attempts to identify the patterns of cooperation between legislators. We argue that if legislators decide to cooperate, they prefer to do so first with their colleagues who share similar affiliations and then across affiliations. In order to examine this hypothesis, we devised a unique cooperation scale and tested it using a sample of the private member bills that were initiated in the 18th Knesset (Israel’s parliament) between 2009 and 2013. We then looked at each bill with regard to its initiators and co-sponsors to see if they were members of the same party, members of the opposition or coalition, or members of a minority group. Based on the quantitative analysis, we found that of all of the factors, only being a minority was significant.  Based on the qualitative analysis, we determined that intra-party cooperation does exist. In three parties – Hadash, Meretz and Israel Beitenu -- legislators tended to cooperate with each other. Finally, with regard to inter-party cooperation, Jewish and Arab MKs tended to cooperate, and Russian Jewish legislators tended to cooperate regardless of party affiliation. Our study is innovative in its creation of a cooperation scale that can be used in other legislatures and that is based on measures of co-sponsorship instead of analyses of dyadic or social networks used in previous studies.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11114/ijsss.v5i2.2148


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International Journal of Social Science Studies   ISSN 2324-8033 (Print)   ISSN 2324-8041 (Online)

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