In this article we aim to contribute to the study of linkage by focusing on the Cypriot communist party—Progressive Party of the Working People (AKEL), an exceptional case in European communism—between the mid-1980s and the present. Based on the distinction between participatory and environmental linkage, we explore three issues. First, we focus on the intensity of linkage processes through the examination of participation patterns and organisational practices in the party. Then, we trace the predominant direction of influence between AKEL and society. Finally, we assess the explanatory value of four potential factors—ideology, electoral competition, party leadership and party model—on the links developed by AKEL with society.
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