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2 Comp. Pol. Stud. 3 (1969-1970)

handle is hein.journals/compls2 and id is 1 raw text is: 






















                               INTRODUCTION







IN   THE   expanding  and increasingly complex universe of the social
   sciences, studies of the relation of social structure, party systems and
voting behavior have achieved a distinctive and significant position. They
are truly interdisciplinary, requiring an understanding of political institu-
tions, sociology, social psychology, and related bodies of knowledge if one
is to reach substantively important and methodologically interesting con-
clusions. Comparative analysis is specially appropriate because of the
relatively high degree of precision that one may hope to achieve in the
measurement  of major'variables. To compare all is not, however, to equate
all. Comparison enables one not only to see to what extent and under
what  circumstances hypothetically comparable cross-national phenomena
are similar, but also to observe and explain why they sometimes differ.
   Since its inception, the Committee on Political Sociology of the Inter-
national Sociological Association has encouraged this work, under the
leadership of S. M. Lipset and Stein Rokkan. A series of conferences have
been held in Europe and America, beginning in Bergen in 1961. Initially,
the conferences provided a means of meeting national experts working on
common   problems in different countries. At a conference at Cambridge
University in December, 1965,  a decision was taken to attempt more
explicitly comparative work, and Richard Rose was asked to head a work-
ing committee on social structure and party systems. In order to make the

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