The field of elections and electoral systems, and particularly electoral reform, has exhibited tremendous growth and cross-national appeal over the last two decades. However, beyond an increased knowledge of voting rules and their consequences for political representation, little attention has been devoted to the question of why electoral systems have recently undergone substantial change in several liberal democracies.
This book addresses several new approaches to electoral reform. First, the scope of the study of electoral reform has been expanded. Second, contrary to previous studies of electoral reform, the conviction that the determinants of reform can be explained by one single approach has been replaced by a belief in a more comprehensive framework for analysis. Third, we move beyond political parties (acting in parliament and government) as the most significant source of electoral reform. Fourth, a focus on the determinants of electoral reform allows us to include motivations and objectives of electoral reform. A final advancement in the study of electoral reform is the inclusion of countries other than ‘established’ democracies.
This book was published as a special issue of West European Politics.
Table of Contents
1. Reconceptualizing Electoral Reform Monique Leyenaar & Reuven Y. Hazan 2. Electoral Reform in Europe since 1945 Alan Renwick 3. The Barriers to Electoral System Reform: A Synthesis of Alternative Approaches Giden Rahat & Reuven Y. Hazan 4. A Conceptual Framework for Major, Minor, and Technical Electoral Reform Kristof Jacobs & Monique Leyenaar 5. The Rise of Gender Quota Laws: Expanding the Spectrum of Determinants for Electoral Reform Karen Celis, Mona Lena Krook & Petra Meier 6. Cultural Explanations of Electoral Reform: A Policy Cycle Model Pippa Norris 7. Electoral reform and Direct Democracy in Canada: When Citizens Become Involved Lawrence LeDuc 8. Party Preferences and Electoral Reform: How Time in Government Affects the Likelihood of Supporting Electoral Change Jean-Benoit Pilet & Damien Bol 9. Democracy as a Cause of Electoral Reform: Jurisprudence and Electoral Change in Canada Richard S. Katz 10. When Electoral Reform Fails: The Stability of Proportional Representation in Post-Communist Democracies Csaba Nikolenyi 11. Veto Players and Electoral Reform in Belgium Marc Hooghe & Kris Deschouwer 12. The Different Trajectories of Italian Electoral Reforms Gianfranco Baldini
Reuven Y. Hazan is Professor at the Political Science Department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel.
Monique Leyenaar is Professor of Political Science at Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.