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Gendering the European Parliament

Electoral Competitiveness in Cross-National Research: Challenges and New Directions

Workshop Number
Workshop Director
Susan Banducci
University of Exeter
Workshop Co-Directors
Heiko Giebler
WZB Berlin Social Science Center
Sylvia Kritzinger
University of Vienna

One of the most important variables in electoral research is competitiveness. It is assumed to be a necessary precondition for a healthy democracy. Electoral competitiveness is linked to various aspects of electoral democracy: it connects to the nature and dynamics of campaigns, media coverage, party systems and strategies, voter efficacy, political engagement and turnout, general voting behaviour and eventually political legitimacy. As electoral behaviour is structured by the respective context (e.g. electoral system, party system, campaigns, media, etc.), research on electoral competition has to follow a comprehensive approach to elections. Although there is a long tradition of studying electoral competition in political science, most have approached the question from a single case approach. Less attention has been paid to examining how electoral competition affects individual level behaviour across electoral systems and in different contexts. Fortunately, there have been many advances in the study of cross-national electoral data. Not only are there more and more studies all over the world, there are also coordinated efforts of harmonization (for example, CSES) and an increasing number of multi-component election studies (for example, PIREDEU). Both developments can help to make substantive progress in the measurement and analysis of electoral competition. We seek a set of papers that addresses substantive questions in comparative electoral research with a direct focus on electoral competition, its measurement and its impact. Beyond that, we are also interested in more technical and methodological papers on the promises and pitfalls of comparative surveys and multi-component election studies.

Paper List

Title Details
A two-level Analysis of the New Class Cleavage in Switzerland View Paper Details
Campaign Effectiveness in a Comparative Perspective View Paper Details
Chasing a Fugitive Impact: Analysing the role of Media in Electoral Competition View Paper Details
Competing or Complementary? Local and National Competitiveness as Explanatory Factors of Turnout in Majority Systems View Paper Details
Considerations and Choices: Comparing Competition Structures View Paper Details
Electoral Competition and Policy Responsiveness in Four Advanced European Democracies (1995-2009) View Paper Details
Electoral Competitiveness in Intra-ethnic Party Systems in Post-Communist States: A Comparative Approach View Paper Details
Electoral Performance in Second Order Elections. Focusing on the Context View Paper Details
Expectations, Competitiveness and Institutions View Paper Details
Foundations and Futures: Examining how Electoral Competition Responds to the Decreasing Salience of Traditional Class Cleavage Structures View Paper Details
Government Loss and Economic Voting: A Global Perspective View Paper Details
Issue Distances, Alienation, and Indifference in a Simultaneous Model of Party Choice and Abstention View Paper Details
Mind the Gap! Predicting the Distance Bridged by Volatile Voters by Means of Contextual Information View Paper Details
Party Competition in the Mass Media: A Cross-National Comparison of Election News Coverage and Electoral Programs View Paper Details
Party Competition, News Information & European Integration View Paper Details
Seeking Votes for Office. Conceptualising Political Competition as the Electoral Vulnerability of Incumbents View Paper Details
System Competitiveness and Electoral Competition across Europe: Valence and Position View Paper Details
The Conflictual Nature of Ideological Polarisation: A Cross-country Analysis of 27 EU Countries View Paper Details
The Interactive Impact between Electoral Competitiveness and the Countries' Electoral System Type: A Panel Analysis View Paper Details
The Role of Party Organisation and Leadership Charisma in Determining Parties’ Electoral Success View Paper Details
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