University Of Tasmania
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Are Leaders Becoming More Powerful? Kevin Rudd and the Presidentialization Thesis Re-Examined

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-23, 09:10 authored by Kefford, G
Are Prime Ministers becoming more like Presidents? Are contemporary Australian political leaders more powerful than their predecessors? These questions have been intensely debated in the literature over the last two decades and central to these debates has been the ‘presidentialization thesis’. This paper will use one of the more systematic presidentialization frameworks as conceptualised by Poguntke and Webb (2005) and apply it to the Australian context by examining the case study of the Kevin Rudd leadership period of the Australian Labor Party (ALP). This paper will argue that the evidence for presidentialization in the Australian system is mixed. However the most compelling evidence in support of presidentialization is reflected in how leaders interact with their parties rather than in how they govern. This paper will also evaluate some of the strengths and weaknesses of the Poguntke and Webb (2005) presidentialization model when applied to the Australian context.


Publication title

Papers from the APSA Conference 2012




School of Social Sciences


Australian Political Studies Association

Place of publication


Event title

Australian Political Studies Association Conference 2012

Event Venue


Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Rights statement

Copyright 2012 the Author

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Government and politics not elsewhere classified

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    University Of Tasmania