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Article

Like Mother, Like Daughter?

Linkage Between Local Branches and Their National Party Headquarters in Belgium

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden local branches, national party headquarters, linkage, integration, multilevel parties
Auteurs Kristof Steyvers
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article scrutinises local-national linkage in Belgium to better understand territorial power relations in multilevel parties. Drawing on a survey of local chairs of national parties, it adopts an innovative, informal and bottom-up approach. The descriptive analysis reveals two central axes in the morphology of linkage: scope (downward support and upward influence) and surplus (benefits versus costs). However, (the valuation of) this interdependence appears as a matter of degree. The explanatory analysis therefore probes into the effect of macro- (between environments), meso- (between parties) and micro- (within parties) level factors. It demonstrates that variance is explained by different parameters. For scope, differences between parties trump those within them. For surplus, specific differences between parties as well as within them matter. The answer to our guiding question is therefore variegated: it depends on for what and for whom.


Kristof Steyvers
Kristof Steyvers is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science of Ghent University (Belgium). His research is conducted in the Centre for Local Politics, where he focuses on topics such as local political leadership, parties and elections at the local level, local government in multilevel governance and local government reforms (often from a comparative perspective).
Article

An Actor Approach to Mediatization

Linking Politicians’ Media Perceptions, Communication Behaviour and Appearances in the News

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering Online First 2020
Trefwoorden mediatization, politicians, news media, media perceptions, news management
Auteurs Pauline Ketelaars en Peter Van Aelst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the light of the broader debate on the mediatization of politics, this study wants to better understand how the media perceptions and media behaviour of politicians are related to their appearances in the news. We opt for an innovative actor-centred approach to actually measure the views and actions of individual politicians. We combine surveys conducted with 142 Belgian representatives with data on politicians’ external communication behaviour and on their appearances in television news, newspapers and news websites. The results show that media behaviour is not so much related to beliefs of media importance. We do find a significant positive relationship between strategic media behaviour and media attention suggesting that politicians who put in more effort appear more often in various news media. However, this positive relationship depends on the specific form of strategic communication and the political position of the legislator. Our study adds to the mediatization literature by showing how and when politicians are successful in obtaining media attention.


Pauline Ketelaars
Pauline Ketelaars, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium. Corresponding Author.
Article

Split-Ticket Voting in Belgium

An Analysis of the Presence and Determinants of Differentiated Voting in the Municipal and Provincial Elections of 2018

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden split-ticket voting, local elections, voting motives, Belgium, PR-system
Auteurs Tony Valcke en Tom Verhelst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article tackles the particular issue of split-ticket voting, which has been largely overlooked in Belgian election studies thus far. We contribute to the literature by answering two particular research questions: (1) to what extent and (2) why do voters cast a different vote in the elections for the provincial council as compared to their vote in the elections for the municipal council?
    The article draws on survey data collected via an exit poll in the ‘Belgian Local Elections Study’, a research project conducted by an inter-university team of scholars.
    Our analysis shows that nearly 45% of the total research population cast a split-ticket vote in the local elections of 2018. However, this number drops to one out of four if we only consider a homogenous party landscape at both levels by excluding the numerous votes for ‘local’ lists (which occur mostly at the municipal level). This finding underlines the importance of accounting for the electoral and institutional context of the different electoral arenas in research on split-ticket voting in PR systems. In the Belgian context, split-ticket voting in 2018 also differed between the different parties and regions. Furthermore, it was encouraged by a higher level of education and familiarity with particular candidates. This candidate-centred and strategic voting was matched by party identification and the urban municipal context favouring straight-ticket voting. Other factors such as region, a rural municipal context and preferential voting seemed more relevant to determine voting for local parties than using the instrument of split-ticket votes as such.


Tony Valcke
Tony Valcke is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of Ghent University (Belgium). He is a member of the Centre for Local Politics (CLP) and coordinator of the Teacher Training Department. His research, publications and educational activities focus on elections and democratic participation/innovation, (the history of) political institutions and (local) government reform, political elites and leadership, citizenship (education).

Tom Verhelst
Tom Verhelst is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at Ghent University (Belgium) and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Political Science at Maastricht University (the Netherlands). His research focuses on the Europeanisation of local government (with a particular interest for the regulatory mobilisation of local government in EU decision-making processes) and on the role and position of the local council in Belgium and the Netherlands (with a particular interest for local council scrutiny).
Article

Split Offer and Homogeneous Response in Belgium

The Conceptual and Empirical Limitations of (De)Nationalization

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden (de-)nationalization, voting behaviour, party offer, voter response, methodological nationalism
Auteurs Luana Russo, Kris Deschouwer en Tom Verthé
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By examining the Belgian case, this article aims to show that methodological nationalism is strongly present in the literature on nationalization of party offer and voting behaviour. In nationalization studies, Belgium is often presented as a typical example of a denationalized country. This is true for the party offer, as it is de facto split between the two language groups since the 1980s, and therefore also voter response at the national level. However, voter response within each separate subnational party system is very homogeneous and shows interesting differences between these party systems that inform us about important electoral dynamics. We argue, on the basis of our results, that rather than stretching the concept of nationalization, it is preferable and justified to treat the concepts of nationalization of the party offer and homogenization of voter response as analytically distinct and not as two sides of the same coin.


Luana Russo
Luana Russo, Maastricht University.

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer, Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Tom Verthé
Tom Verthé, Ghent University & Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
Article

Het financiële gedrag van politieke partijen

Een verkennend onderzoek op basis van de Belgische case

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2018
Trefwoorden party spending, financial behaviour, spending behaviour, dealignment, professionalisation, Belgium
Auteurs Jef Smulders en Bart Maddens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In recent decades processes of partisan dealignment and professionalisation have taken place. But how do political parties adapt their financial behaviour to these changes in the political-electoral system? We answer this question by analysing two indicators. First, we examine to what extent parties spend their available financial means (saving versus spending strategy). Secondly, we study how parties spend their available financial means (bureaucratic versus electoral strategy). Based on these two indicators we set up a two-dimensional model describing the financial behaviour of political parties, which we apply to data of Belgian parties in the period 1999-2015. The results illustrate that most parties generally adopt a bureaucratic saving strategy, but that there has not been a linear evolution between 1999 and 2015 towards a specific financial behaviour as a reaction to dealignment and professionalisation.


Jef Smulders
Jef Smulders is aspirant van het Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek - Vlaanderen (FWO), verbonden aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Hij verricht voornamelijk onderzoek naar partij- en campagenfinanciering en naar de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten. Zijn doctoraatsproefschrift handelde over de uitgaven van politieke partijen in Europa.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is gewoon hoogleraar in de politieke wetenschappen aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Zijn onderzoeksagenda richt zich hoofdzakelijk op partijen campagnefinanciering, politieke carrièrepatronen, de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten en multilevelsystemen.
Article

Het electorale succes van etnische minderheden in Brussel: de rol van kiezers en partijen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 4 2017
Trefwoorden Brussels, electoral system, ethnic minorities, political representation
Auteurs Chloé Janssen, Régis Dandoy en Silvia Erzeel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    European democracies have grown ethnically diverse in the recent years. Yet, ethnic minorities remain underrepresented in politics. Despite the theoretical argument asserting that ethnic minorities should perform better in systems allowing voters to cast intra party preferences, empirical studies bring mixed results. In particular, scholars highlight the role of both parties and voters in explaining the electoral success or failure of ethnic minority candidates. Using data on regional elections between 1995 and 2014 in Brussels, our study shows that even though parties have made gradual efforts to include ethnic minorities on their lists, voters appear to be an important force behind the election of ethnic minorities. We find variations according to party ideology, with socialist and – to a lesser extent – Christian democratic candidates benefiting the most from preferential voting. However, the positive impact of preference votes seems to decrease over time, as parties themselves become more inclusive and tend to allocate more realistic positions to their ethnic minority candidates in recent elections.


Chloé Janssen
Chloé Janssen is als doctoraal onderzoekster verbonden aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Daarvoor werkte ze als FNRS research fellow aan de Université catholique de Louvain. Haar onderzoek handelt over de politieke vertegenwoordiging van etnische minderheden en vrouwen, en focust in het bijzonder op het effect van het kiessysteem en de rol van politieke partijen.

Régis Dandoy
Régis Dandoy is docent aan de Waseda University (Tokio, Japan) en gastdocent aan de Université catholique de Louvain. Zijn belangrijkste onderzoeksinteresses zijn Belgische politiek, vergelijkend federalisme, regionale politiek en party manifestos. Hij publiceerde hierover in internationale tijdschriften en is tevens coredacteur van verschillende boeken over Belgische politiek.

Silvia Erzeel
Silvia Erzeel doceert politieke wetenschappen aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Haar onderzoek en recente publicaties spitsen zich toe op gender en politieke vertegenwoordiging, rechts populisme, intersectionaliteit in politieke partijen, en economische ongelijkheid. Haar onderzoek is vaak vergelijkend, met een geografische focus op West-Europa.
Article

Verticale politieke cumul in de Lage Landen: evolutie en verklaringen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden Cumul des mandats, Multiple office-holding, Members of parliament, Local representatives, Central-local relations
Auteurs Nicolas Van de Voorde
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Studies have shown that multiple office-holding, a practice that denotes the simultaneous exercise of any directly elected municipal mandate and parliamentary seat, is more commonplace in European national parliaments than expected. However, research in Belgium, and especially in the Netherlands, is scarce and extremely fragmented. Therefore, our analysis provides a systematic comparison between the Low Countries with a longitudinal focus. In the first part of the paper, the frequency of the practice is described and its evolution in the last two decades tracked. In the second part, we provide aggregated explanations for the identified discrepancy. Indeed, our results show that after the most recent elections, more than 80% of all Belgian members of parliament held a local mandate, and this percentage increased by 10% during our reference period. In contrast, 9 out of 150 members of the Dutch Second Chamber were combining several offices at the beginning of their national mandate, while the degree of cumulards remained stable. Unexpectedly, the legislative framework and the party regulations are not the source of this deviation, as they are almost identical in both countries. We argue that the difference can be attributed to the role and position of the local government, the political culture and the electoral system.


Nicolas Van de Voorde
Nicolas Van de Voorde is als FWO-aspirant verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek aan de Universiteit Gent. Zijn onderzoek is gericht op het fenomeen cumul des mandats in de Belgische context.
Article

Domineren Brussel en Den Haag ook de Dorpsstraat?

Nationale en lokale determinanten van het succes van nationale partijen bij de Nederlandse en Vlaamse gemeenteraadsverkiezingen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden second-order elections, municipal elections, local politics
Auteurs Sofie Hennau, Ramon van der Does en Johan Ackaert
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article investigates to what extent national and/or local factors influence the performance of national parties in the most recent Flemish and Dutch municipal elections of, respectively, 2012 and 2014.
    Our analyses underscore the impact of local factors on the municipal election results, both in Flanders and in the Netherlands. The number of parties and previous election results have a negative effect on the vote share of national political parties. Contrary to the expectations, participation in local government does not have any influence on the national lists’ elections results.
    Although local factors have to be taken into account to get a better estimation of the performance of national lists in municipal elections, national factors have significant effects as well. Parties doing well at the national elections, are less successful at the local level.


Sofie Hennau
Sofie Hennau is postdoctoraal onderzoeker aan de faculteit Rechten van de UHasselt. Zij doet onderzoek naar lokale institutionele hervormingen en lokale politiek.

Ramon van der Does
Ramon van der Does is werkzaam als onderwijs- en onderzoeksassistent aan de Universiteit Leiden. Ook doet hij zelfstandig onderzoek naar deliberatie, politieke participatie en lokale verkiezingen.

Johan Ackaert
Johan Ackaert is hoogleraar en decaan van de faculteit Rechten van de UHasselt. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op lokaal beleid en lokale politiek.
Artikel

Campagneactiviteiten en -financiering van lokale partijen in Nederland

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden electoral campaigns, campaign financing, independent local lists, party subsidies, local elections
Auteurs Justin Bergwerff MSc en Dr. Hans Vollaard
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Electoral campaigning and its financing at the local level have been hardly studied in spite of the growing political significance of municipalities in the Netherlands. Local parties have been barely studied either, even though they gained more than 30 percent of the seats in the local elections of 2014. They have done so without any public subsidy, whereas subsidized national parties can and do support their local branches. This article examines which campaign activities local parties used to attract voters, how these activities were funded, and whether local parties perceived subsidies necessary and desirable. A survey among local parties held just after the local elections of 2014, indicates that their campaigns are by and large a traditional, low-cost affair. They are often not labor-intensive nor technology-intensive, despite the electoral effectiveness of micro-targeting and canvassing. Contributions from local councilors constitute the main source of finance. The survey also shows that transparency of campaign financing can count on widespread support among local parties. They also prefer a level playing field between local parties and local branches of national parties by providing both public subsidies or none, which is an important contribution to the discussion on the current legislative proposals on party financing at the local level.


Justin Bergwerff MSc
Justin Bergwerff MSc is financieel beleidsmedewerker aan het ministerie van Onderwijs, Cultuur en Wetenschap.

Dr. Hans Vollaard
Dr. Hans Vollaard is universitair docent Nederlandse en Europese politiek, Departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap, Universiteit Utrecht.
Article

Het geslacht van de kandidaat als heuristisch stemmotief

Een onderzoek naar het effect van politieke sofisticatie en electorale context op gender-based stemgedrag

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2017
Auteurs Sjifra de Leeuw
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this paper, I study gender-based voting behavior in the Belgian proportional electoral system. In particular, I investigate two possible causes for why voters experience the need to simplify their voting decision by using a gender-cue. First, in line with the findings of previous studies, I find that voters with lower levels of political sophistication who are less able to collect and process political information, are consequently more likely to use the sex of a candidate as a shortcut. However, the effect of political sophistication on gender-based voting behavior is limited. Second, based on the literature, I expect that the low information context of the second-order European elections would cause both high and low information voters to become more reliant on gendercues to simplify their voting decision and by extent would cause the effect of political sophistication on gender-based voting to diminish. Against theoretical expectations, I find that the effect of the electoral context is negligible.


Sjifra de Leeuw
Sjifra de Leeuw is masterstudente Politieke Wetenschappen, Statistiek en Sociologie aan de KU Leuven. Vanaf september 2017 is zij doctoraatsstudent politieke communicatie aan de Amsterdam School of Communication Research (Universiteit van Amsterdam).
Article

Van Volksunie (VU) naar Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (N-VA)

Een analyse van de ideologische opvattingen van hun partijleden

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2016
Trefwoorden regionalist parties, party ideology, elections, party members, Belgium
Auteurs Bram Wauters en Nicolas Bouteca
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The electoral rise of the Belgian regionalist party New-Flemish Alliance (N-VA) from scratch to the country’s largest party is remarkable. We explore here to what extent the party has shifted in ideological terms compared to its less successful predecessor VU. We make use of party member survey data (a dynamic indicator of a party’s position). We distinguish three factors that impact on parties’ positions: institutional reforms, the influx of new members and changes in the internal power distribution. The results show a clear change: on each of the five policy dimensions (centre-periphery, socio-economic, moral-ethical, post-materialist and migration issues), significant differences could be found.


Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is professor aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is hoofd van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR).

Nicolas Bouteca
Nicolas Bouteca is professor aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de UGent en lid van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR). Hij publiceerde eerder over ideologie, politieke partijen, electorale competitie en het Belgisch federalisme.
Article

Het primacy-effect in proportionele systemen gewikt en gewogen

De casus van de Antwerpse districtsverkiezingen 2012

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 1 2015
Trefwoorden preferential voting, political candidates, primacy effect, media, campaigns
Auteurs Patrick van Erkel en Peter Thijssen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Previous research shows that the position on the ballot list strongly influences the electoral success of candidates. However, the underlying mechanisms of this effect remain unclear. The list position can have a direct influence through a so-called primacy effect, parties may anticipate on the success of candidates, or the effect can be mediated by factors such as media attention and campaign intensity. Using data from the Antwerp district elections in 2012, this paper disentangles these mechanisms. Our study confirms the direct ballot list position effect, providing evidence for the existence of a primacy effect. However, we find that part of the ballot list position effect is mediated by media attention, especially for the first candidate on the list. Campaign intensity also influences the electoral success of candidates, but does not mediate the list position effect. Finally, we find no evidence that parties successfully anticipate on the electoral success of candidates.


Patrick van Erkel
Patrick van Erkel is medewerker en doctoraatsstudent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen. Tevens is hij lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn doctoraat richt zich op het verklaren van electoraal succes van individuele kandidaten.

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is hoofddocent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Uni versiteit Antwerpen. Hij is lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P). Zijn onderzoek spitst zich toe op de wisselwerking tussen publieke opinie en politieke participatie.
Article

Van goudwaarde in verkiezingstijden?

Electorale presidentialisering van het burgemeesterschap in Vlaanderen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 1 2015
Trefwoorden mayor, elections, preference votes, personalization, presidentialization
Auteurs Johannes Rodenbach, Bram Wauters en Kristof Steyvers
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Presidentialization involves a shift in focus from collective actors (such as parties) to one person, in this case the mayor. It is a specific form of personalization which focusses on one rather than on several individuals. Electoral presidentialization, which constitutes one of the diverse features of this phenomenon, was studied at the local level in Flanders (Belgium). By formulating hypotheses based on theoretical and empirical insights on personalization (referring to several politicians), we have tried to figure out whether presidentialization differs from personalization. From our results, it appears that mayors indeed attract a huge share of preferential votes, but also that most factors that influence personalization have an impact on presidentialization too. These include both individual variables (such as media attention and incumbency) and municipal variables (such as size of the municipality and number of parties). Although both trends differ in nature, the factors influencing them appear to be similar.


Johannes Rodenbach
Johannes Rodenbach is als doctoraal onderzoeker verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek, onderdeel van de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij bereidt een scriptie voor rond de presidentialisering van het burgemeesterschap in Vlaanderen en werkt mee aan het ‘European Mayor’-project, een comparatief onderzoek naar burgemeesters in 28 Europese landen.

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is als docent verbonden aan de Faculteit Politieke en Sociale Wetenschappen van de UGent, waar hij de onderzoeksgroep GASPAR (www.gaspar.ugent.be) leidt. Zijn onderzoek gaat over verkiezingen, partijen en politieke representatie, met bijzondere aandacht voor ondervertegenwoordigde groepen.

Kristof Steyvers
Kristof Steyvers is hoofddocent aan de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Zijn onderzoek situeert zich daar in de context van het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek. Het is gericht op lokaal politiek leiderschap, verkiezingen en partijen op lokaal niveau, hervormingen aan het lokaal bestuur, de democratische verankering van lokale netwerkverbanden, vergelijkende lokale politiek en stadspolitiek en stedenbeleid.
Article

De selectie van verkiesbare kandidaten

Een analyse van de Belgische Kamerverkiezingen 1999-2010

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2012
Trefwoorden candidate selection, representation, Belgium
Auteurs Gert-Jan Put en Bart Maddens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In a closed or semi-open PR-system, the designation of the MPs is primarily determined by their position on the list. In this paper, we attempt to find out on the basis of which criteria a party selects the candidates who are most likely to be elected, due to their high and/or visible position on the list. We do so by comparing these realistic candidates with the candidates on unrealistic positions on the list. A multi-level logistic regression analysis of the Flemish candidates in four subsequent federal elections in Belgium shows that the selectorates have a marked preference for incumbents and for mayors. Aldermen also stand a better chance of being elected, but only if they are from a larger communality. Women are strongly underrepresented amongst the realistic candidates, but this is only due to the fact that there are relatively few women mayors and incumbents.


Gert-Jan Put
Gert-Jan Put is als aspirant van het FWO verbonden aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de KULeuven. Hij bereidt een proefschrift voor over de geografische strategie van partijen bij verkiezingen.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is hoogleraar aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de KULeuven. Hij doet onderzoek over partij- en campagnefinanciering en politieke partijen in multilevelsystemen.
Article

Samen naar de kiezer

De vorming van pre-electorale allianties tussen CD&V en N-VA en tussen SP.a en Groen! bij de gemeenteraadsverkiezingen van 2006

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 4 2011
Trefwoorden political parties, pre-electoral alliances, party strategies, local politics
Auteurs Tom Verthé en Kris Deschouwer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Political parties normally compete in elections individually. Yet, sometimes they join forces and form pre-electoral alliances. This rather unusual strategy contains both costs and benefits. In this article we try to identify those costs and benefits by opening up the black box of internal party decision making in considering pre-electoral alliance formation. We start by assuming that parties of different electoral sizes could have different motives to face the voter as one electoral list. Through in-depth interviews at the local level in Flanders, we have studied pre-electoral alliance formation for the municipal elections in 2006. We find that the arguments of large parties mainly focus on becoming the leading formation and thus claiming the initiative in coalition formation. Small parties have more varied motives for forming or failing to form a pre-electoral alliance.


Tom Verthé
Tom Verthé is aspirant van het Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek – Vlaanderen en doctoraatsstudent in de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Hij werkt over politieke partijen en verkiezingen en in het bijzonder over preelectorale alliantievorming.

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer is onderzoeksprofessor in de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Hij werkt over politieke partijen, verkiezingen, federalisme en regionalisme en politieke besluitvorming in verdeelde samenlevingen.
Article

Maken sterke lijsten een verschil?

Een analyse van de lijsten bij de federale en regionale verkiezingen in het Vlaams Gewest (2003-2010)

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2011
Auteurs Bart Maddens en Gert-Jan Put
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Theories on ticket balancing assume that the success of a list in an open list PR system is related to the distribution of the candidates on the list according to variables such as age, gender, professional background and residence. To test these assumptions data were collected about 179 lists for the 2003, 2007 and 2010 federal and 2004 and 2009 regional elections, in the Flemish region of Belgium. A multivariate analysis shows that a list is more successful compared to the other lists of the party in the election if there are more incumbents and aldermen or majors on the list, and less young candidates. A similar analysis with the relative swing as dependent variable suggests that only the age and the number of aldermen or majors have a causal effect on the success. The success of a list does not seem to depend on the visibility of woman candidates, the professional profi les of the candidates, their geographical dispersion or the total campaign expenditures.


Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is hoogleraar aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Hij doet onderzoek over onder andere partij- en campagnefinanciering en politieke partijen in multi-level systemen.

Gert-Jan Put
Gert-Jan Put is assistent aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Hij doet onderzoek over de geografische spreiding van kandidaten en de geopolitieke strategie van partijen.
Article

De impact van party magnitude op het aantal vrouwelijke verkozenen

Gender quota in België kritisch bekeken

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2011
Trefwoorden gender quota, Belgium, impact, party magnitude, women in politics
Auteurs Sandra Sliwa, Petra Meier en Peter Thijssen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the literature on the impact of gender quota party magnitude appears as one of the most critical explanatory variables. A high party magnitude has long been argued to be a necessary condition for quota to be effective. However, recently a number of studies have shown that gender quota can be equally effective in the case of low party magnitude. An analysis of the Belgian regional elections for the years 1999, 2004 and 2009 shows that for quota to be effective it is crucial that they are tailored to the electoral system in which they are applied. Quota prove to be particularly effective when party magnitude is high while a placement mandate is effective when it covers a substantial part of the eligible list positions. We therefore conclude that effective quota can be designed for both high and low party magnitude.


Sandra Sliwa
Sandra Sliwa was van november 2008 tot en met mei 2010 als wetenschappelijk medewerker verbonden aan de Universiteit Antwerpen. Haar onderzoek richtte zich op de impact van genderquota en de determinanten van voorkeurstemmen. Nu werkt ze als beleidsmedewerker voor de Milieu- en Natuurraad Vlaanderen.

Petra Meier
Petra Meier is docente aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en promotor coördinator van het Steunpunt Gelijke Kansenbeleid. Haar onderzoek spitst zich toe op vraagstukken van politieke vertegenwoordiging in politiek en beleid vanuit (o.a.) een genderperspectief.

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is hoofddocent aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen. Zijn onderzoek spitst zich toe op de wisselwerking tussen publieke opinie en politieke participatie.
Article

Kandidaatkeuze in advertenties

Wat bepaalt wie aandacht krijgt?

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2010
Trefwoorden election campaigns, advertisements, agenda setting, content analysis
Auteurs Jonas Lefevere en Régis Dandoy
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the run up to the elections, parties have several ways of communicating with voters. In the current paper, we focus on one piece of the puzzle: advertisements of political parties in the mass media. More specifically, we are interested in the choice of candidates within these ads. In countries where parties are the dominant actor, they are faced with a choice: not all candidates can be promoted in the campaign, as this would be too costly and inefficient. Thus, the first question we want to answer is what factors determine candidate choice in political ads? Secondly, does candidate choice in political ads have an effect on the subsequent coverage in media as well? Agenda setting research has shown that as far as issues are concerned, ads do set the media agenda. We investigate whether this also holds for candidate choice. The results indicate that both internal party hierarchy, as well as external visibility of candidates determines candidate choice in political ads. Furthermore, the agenda setting effect of political ads is confirmed as well.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere (1981) is doctoraatsstudent en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek (M2P) aan de Universiteit Antwerpen. Zijn voornaamste onderzoeksinteresses zijn verkiezingscampagnes en hun effecten, en onderzoek naar publieke opinie.

Régis Dandoy
Régis Dandoy (1977) is onderzoeker aan de Université Libre de Bruxelles. Zijn voornaamste onderzoeksinteresses zijn Belgische en Europese politiek, agenda setting en federalisme.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst (1974) is verbonden aan het Instituut Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Leiden. Zijn onderwijs en onderzoek situeert zich in het domein van de politieke communicatie en de politieke psychologie.
Article

Negatieve verkiezingscampagnes en de gevolgen op kiesintenties

De Vlaamse regionale verkiezingen van juni 2009

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2010
Trefwoorden negative campaigning, Flemish regional elections 2009, voter preferences
Auteurs Ruth Dassonneville
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article we address two questions considering the Flemish regional elections of June 2009. First we determine whether this campaign can be called a negative campaign and what amount of negativity it contained. Second, we want to know what the consequences of negativity were on voter preferences. Our research, based on a newspaper analysis, shows that the campaign contained an average amount of negative campaign messages compared to campaigns in other political systems (United States, the Netherlands and Denmark). We calculated effects on voter preferences by means of the PartiRep Belgian Voter Survey of 2009, a survey with a unique three wave panel design. The results demonstrate that negative campaigning seems to have been effective in 2009. Parties with negative campaigns attracted more attention from voters and also seemed to gain during the campaign. Personal attacks on opponents, on the other hand, did not have an effect on the electoral appeal of a party. Incumbent parties even lost votes when they launched personal attacks. The results suggest that, in the Flemish context, an attack on the opponent’s program or governmental record can be effective, but that personal attacks are not rewarded by the voters.


Ruth Dassonneville
Ruth Dassonneville (1987) behaalde een master in de geschiedenis en een master in de vergelijkende en internationale politiek aan de KULeuven. Ze schreef een masterproef over negatieve campagnes met een focus op de Vlaamse verkiezingen van juni 2009. Zij is nu als wetenschappelijk medewerkster verbonden aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de KULeuven.
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