Journal of Political Institutions and Political Economy > Vol 3 > Issue 1

Coalitions, Indigenous Peoples, and Populism in the Americas

Alberto Diaz-Cayeros, Center for Latin American Studies, Stanford University, USA,
Suggested Citation
Alberto Diaz-Cayeros (2022), "Coalitions, Indigenous Peoples, and Populism in the Americas", Journal of Political Institutions and Political Economy: Vol. 3: No. 1, pp 107-123.

Publication Date: 09 Mar 2022
© 2022 A. Diaz-Cayeros
Presidential politics,  Political participation,  Religion and politics
PopulismLatin Americaindigenous peoplescoalitionsreligion


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In this article:
Populism as a Strategic Approach to Identity Politics 
Politics of Identity in Latin America: Indigenous Resurgence and Religious Conversion 
Modeling the Delay in the Arrival of a Populist Leaders into Power in the Americas 
Discussion and Further Research 


This research note proposes using a model of coalition formation in the context of cross cutting cleavages to understand the wave of populism in Latin America and the broader Western Hemisphere. Identities in politics can be more readily mobilized to the extent that a particular partition of the electorate is more likely to contribute to a minimal winning coalition. Such structural and strategic approach accounts for the emergence of populist leaderships in Latin America as a response to both the prevailing institutional weaknesses and the growing ethnic and religious cleavages in the form of indigenous self-adscription, as well as linguistic difference, and the emergence of non-Catholic religious practices. The research note provides a simple statistical test, carried out through a Cox proportional hazards duration model, estimating the delay in the ascent of populist leaders to executive office. Populism can be seen as a political strategy to capitalize on shifting demographic patterns mobilizing available partners that can form new majorities.



Journal of Political Institutions and Political Economy, Volume 3, Issue 1 Special Issue - The Political Economy of Populism, Part II
See the other articles that are part of this special issue.