Biographical Data of Cabinet Ministers, 18 Parliamentary Democracies, 1945-2015



Biographical data of cabinet ministers in the portfolios of: PM, DPM, Foreign Affairs, Finance, Economic Affairs, Social Affairs, Employment, Health.

Scholars and commentators increasingly wonder whether governments’ failure to address socio-economic inequalities is the result of unequal representation. Recent literature on policy responsiveness in the United States and Europe finds evidence that party and parliamentary policy proposals and actual policy outcomes are closer to the preferences of the rich than of the poor. However, the extent and character of such unequal representation remains thinly understood. Among the most thinly understood are the mechanisms: the political conditions that link socio-economic inequalities to unequal representation. This article thickens our understanding of (unequal) representation by investigating the class composition of parliamentary cabinets and its effect on social welfare policy. With the aid of a new dataset on cabinet ministers' social class, the article shows that responsiveness to the social welfare preferences of poorer voters varies by cabinet ministers’ professional backgrounds, above and beyond the partisan orientation of the government.

External deposit with Harvard Dataverse
Date made available26 Nov 2021
PublisherHarvard Dataverse
Date of data productionJun 2021
  • Cabinet Ministers and Inequality

    Alexiadou, D., 31 Jul 2020, Geneva, 43 p. (Unequal Democracies; no. 20).

    Research output: Working paper

    Open Access

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