This accessible textbook provides a comprehensive introduction and guide to theories of voting and electoral behaviour. By carefully presenting and explaining the major technical and methodological advances made in voting studies, the text serves to provide a complete review of the different approaches and techniques that have characterized this area of study from its origins to the present day. The book includes separate chapters on abstention and electoral competition, and employs a range of empirical examples from a number of countries. It concludes by looking at how voting studies might evolve in the future.

Voting and the Economy

Voting and the economy

Summary Box

  • Economics and elections
  • Defining the VP-function
  • Aggregate models and their developments
  • Introducing individual perceptions
  • Retrospective and prospective models
  • Pocketbook and sociotropic models
  • Further refinements and future developments


‘If I were told I could only have one variable to determine the outcome of the [2000 US presidential] election it would be economic growth. Then I would take presidential popularity.’ Prof. Michael Lewis-Beck, ENN, 17 May 2000

The fact that advanced industrial and post-industrial societies generally also enjoy the highest levels of democracy has been an association that has been taken largely as read in political science and its sub-disciplines. It has motivated much of policy-making and agenda-setting in democracies as well. It has also driven much of the policy of Western governments and NGOs such as ...

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