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Impact of electoral reform: Parties, voters and legislators in Italy, 1996-2001.

Khatib, Kamleh (2008) Impact of electoral reform: Parties, voters and legislators in Italy, 1996-2001. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science (United Kingdom).

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This thesis presents a comprehensive picture of the Italian political system under mixed electoral rules, between 1996 and 2001. It addresses how a mixed member majoritarian electoral system affects the incentive structure of parties, voters and legislators, which in turn affect political and social outcomes. The thesis consequently investigates three related phenomena which were not necessarily considered by the drafters of the reform; namely pre-electoral bargaining, split-ticket voting, and the link between dual candidacy and legislative behaviour. First, the thesis addresses pre-electoral coalition bargaining, investigating the role that parties' policy positions play as a 'threat' resource. Second, the thesis investigates the impact of candidates' policy positions, among other variables, on the tendency of voters to split their ticket. Finally, the thesis addresses how indicators of electoral path, such as the opportunity of MPs to run simultaneously in both proportional and majoritarian tiers, affect legislative behaviour. The research develops new theoretical insights, analyses new empirical data, and applies innovative methodological tools. Not only does the thesis shed light on the logic underlying these three intriguing phenomena, but also contributes to our understanding of mixed electoral systems. Specifically, by investigating the incentive structures of parties, voters and legislators under mixed rules, the thesis represents an important contribution to contamination theory. The results support the argument that mixed electoral systems are not merely the sum of their proportional and majoritarian elements, but instead constitute a new and distinct hybrid system.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Political Science, General
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
Departments > Government

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