University of Twente Student Theses


AK PARTi: "How comparable is the Turkish AK Parti to European Christian Democratic parties?"

Vlaskamp, Martijn (2008) AK PARTi: "How comparable is the Turkish AK Parti to European Christian Democratic parties?".

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Abstract:In this bachelor thesis the Turkish AK Parti is compared with European Christian Democratic parties. The parties are compared with the results of expert surveys by Benoit and Laver on eight different dimensions. The results of these comparisons are analysed to explain the similarities and differences. As definition for a Christian Democratic party a membership in the EPP is used. In empirical terms the AKP fitted into the patterns of Christian Democratic parties. However, a closer analysis of the compared dimensions showed that many similarities and differences can be attributed to the special Turkish situation. The attitudes of the AKP can in many cases be more attributed to the domestic situation in Turkey as to ideological similarities. Summarising they are more ‘social conservative” as most Christian Democratic parties and even economical liberal. However, the main conclusion is that the AKP as a party is due to his history and its setup a Turkish phenomenon and it is very hard to put them in a European political framework. It is not correct to see them just as an Islamic variant of “Christian Democracy”, for that there many of its political priorities are too much connected to the Turkish scenario as to the Christian Democratic ideology. But since they are in a quite unique situation within the European party spectrum the EPP looks as the natural ally and, if they enter one day the European parliament, its fraction could be an appropriate place for the AKP
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:88 social and public administration
Programme:Public Administration BSc (56627)
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