Dimensions of Politics in the Czech Republic


This article deals with the dimensions of politics in the Czech Republic since the state’s establishment in 1993 until 2017. It utilizes MPs’ votes by roll call in the Chamber of Deputies, which is the polity’s centre of gravity. The analysis suggests that two principal drivers shape Czech politics – an ideological (socio-economic left vs right) dimension and an institutional (government vs opposition) division. Due to the changing forms of the ruling cabinets, the dimensionality oscillates between unidimensional and two-dimensional (with a specific phase of as many as three relevant dimensions between 1998–2002). Periods of right-oriented majority cabinets result in a unidimensional competition composed of a merged ideological dimension and an institutional division. Stages of left-oriented majority cabinets ideologically split the opposition camp and highlight the unique role of the socio-economic dimension separated from the still dominant institutional division. During the rule of both left- and right-oriented minority cabinets, political competition is mainly driven by the ideological cleavage since the conventional institutional patterns diminish.

Czech Republic; Chamber of Deputies; parliament; dimensionality; roll call; spatial modelling




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