The study of voting behaviour remains a vibrant sub-discipline of political science. The Handbook of Electoral Behaviour is an authoritative and wide ranging survey of this dynamic field, drawing together a team of the world's leading scholars to provide a state-of-the-art review that sets the agenda for future study. Taking an interdisciplinary approach and focusing on a range of countries, the handbook is composed of eight parts. The first five cover the principal theoretical paradigms, establishing the state of the art in their conceptualisation and application, and followed by chapters on their specific challenges and innovative applications in contemporary voting studies. The remaining three parts explore elements of the voting process to understand their different effects on vote outcomes. The SAGE Handbook of Electoral Behaviour is an essential benchmark publication for advanced students, researchers and practitioners in the fields of politics, sociology, psychology and research methods.

The VP-Function: A Review

The VP-Function: A Review
Mary Stegmaier Michael S. Lewis-Beck Beomseob Park


From decades of scholarship, we know that the economy matters for government support and election outcomes. Key generalizations are now possible. As the economy improves, support for the incumbent increases. When the economy declines, support decreases. Statistical models assessing the relationship between the economy and the incumbent vote share are referred to as ‘vote functions'. The same underlying logic that leads the public to reward or punish incumbents at the polls applies to understanding government approval or popularity. These ‘popularity functions’ differ from vote functions in that popularity is measured monthly or quarterly, while elections occur much ...

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