Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Dr. R.R. March
This study examines the relationship between the internal decision making and administrative structure of the federal New Democratic Party and the Party's policy outlook. Other work done on the NDP had tended to concentrate on the influence Canadian political culture has exerted on the Party's policy perspective.
The thesis argues that although the Cooperative Commonweatlth Federation initially put forward a platform containing liberal and socialist elements, liberalism now has an overwhelming influence on the NDP's programme. The examination of the NDP's internal organization reveals that it has fostered the adoption of a liberal approach by the Party. Within the NDP's organization, the leadership and policy selection processes, the importance of the parliamentary caucus relative to the Party, the nature of organizations affiliated with the NDP, and the relationship between the federal and provincial sections of the Party have combined to encourage a liberal policy perspective.
In conclusion, it is argued that the assumption of a more socialistic policy perspective by the NDP could be facilitated by changed in its organization. The assumption of such an approach is dependent upon the Party strengthening its federal section, enlarging the presence of its left wing in the leadership, and increasing the proportion of seats held by the NDP in the House of Commons.
Turnbull, Leslie Gay, "The Internal Decision Making Structure of the Federal New Democratic Party: Its Impact on Policy and Leadership Selection" (1978). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 323.