While patronage is found in a wide range of political systems, it has a differential impact on the territorial character of polities and on their overall quality of governance. James Scott speaks of the capacity of patronage to act as “political cement,” 1 and Robert Putnam observes that late-nineteenth-century patronage practices in Italy rendered “political channels... more important than administrative channels” in linking local interests to the capital.2 Through a comparison of three Asian polities with well-developed systems of patronage politics, this chapter examines the degree to which patronage structures provide this critical “political cement” between the national and local levels. While patronage is ubiquitous, its mere presence does not mean that central-local relations are necessarily defined more by “political channels” than “administrative channels.” The relative importance of patronage as a territorial glue, I argue, relates to the nature of the broader institutional context.
|Title of host publication||Clientelism, Social Policy, and the Quality of Democracy|
|Editors||Diego Abente Brun & Larry Diamond|
|Place of Publication||Baltimore, USA|
|Publisher||Johns Hopkins University Press|
|Publication status||Published - 2014|