Political Recruitment
Pippa Norris Books



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Political Recruitment:

Gender, race and class in the British Parliament

Pippa Norris and Joni Lovenduski

Book published 1995 Cambridge University Press 334 pages 17 line diagrams 76 tables | ISBN: 0521469619  

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In this compelling book Pippa Norris and Joni Lovenduski provide the first full account of legislative recruitment in Britain for twenty-five years. Their central concern is how and why some politicians succeed in moving into the highest offices of state, while others fail. The book examines the relative dearth of women, black and working-class Members of Parliament, and whether the evident social bias in the British political élite matters for political representation. Legislative recruitment concerns the critical step from lower levels (activists, local counsellors) to a parliamentary career. The authors draw evidence from the first systematic surveys of parliamentary candidates, Members of Parliament and party selectors, as well as detailed personal interviews. The study explores how and why people become politicians, and the consequences for parties, legislatures and representative government.


Political Recruitment is likely to become the standard work of its kind, and it certainly deserves to be, for the depth of its scholarship, the comprehensive scope of its research, and the logic with which its case is reasoned.’ Talking Politics



1. Puzzles in political recruitment;


Part I. Who Selects and How?:


2. The structure of political recruitment;

3. Conservative recruitment;

4. Labour recruitment;

5. Minor party recruitment;


Part II. Who Gets Selected and Why?:


6. Supply and demand explanations;

7. Gatekeeper attitudes;

8. Candidate resources;

9. Candidate motivation; 1

0. Comparative candidate recruitment;


Part III. Does the Social Bias Matter?:


11. The values, priorities and roles of MPs;

12. The personal vote;

13. Reforming recruitment.


Copyright 2004 Pippa Norris, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge MA 02138. www.pippanorris.co

Last updated 12/06/2009