Two major patterns of elite integration have so far been described theoretically and empirically in the literature: the pluralist and the consensual integration models. However, these studies only focus on developed countries, and the methodologies used are not entirely satisfactory. This interdisciplinary article proposes a new four-stage analytical framework to study elite integration. It combines tools from social network analysis, including k-core decomposition, which has never been used in this field of study, with an econometric estimation. Applied to a network of 3,431 national elites in Madagascar, this methodology allows us to identify an unprecedented structure of integration, which we call hypercentralized and hierarchical integration. The elites are generally strongly interconnected, but in a very unequal way. These inequalities could partly explain the recurrent instability that Madagascar is experiencing.
- social network analysis
- k-core decomposition