Protestors, parliamentarians, policy-makers: The experience of Australian Green MPs

Ariadne Vromen, Anika Gauja, Anika Gauja

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    This article details the distinctive style and political commitments that Green members of parliament (MPs) bring to representative democracy in Australia. Based on in-depth interviews with 16 sitting federal and state Green MPs, it examines the extent to which the political culture, grassroots organisation and values of this left-libertarian party influence the parliamentary role orientations and legislative behaviour of its MPs, and how this fits with existing research on parliamentary representatives. The analysis reveals mixed results: while the legislative priorities and representative focus of MPs appear to be influenced more by previous social movement and parliamentary experience rather than overarching party orientations, the party's culture has had a strong impact on MPs' views regarding issues of conscience and their style of representation. Drawing on the comparative experience of Green parties throughout Western Europe, this article utilises the prism of role orientations to assess the conflicting imperatives Australian Green MPs face in staying true to their movement origins while their party becomes increasingly professional and influential in the parliamentary arena.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)87-110
    JournalThe Journal of Legislative Studies
    Volume15
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

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