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Linking Citizens and PartiesHow Electoral Systems Matter for Political Representation$
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Lawrence Ezrow

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572526

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572526.001.0001

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The Effects of Electoral Institutions

The Effects of Electoral Institutions

Chapter:
(p.119) 7 The Effects of Electoral Institutions
Source:
Linking Citizens and Parties
Author(s):

Lawrence Ezrow (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572526.003.0007

This chapter combines the conclusions of the previous chapters, and claims that one way in which electoral systems matter for citizen–party linkages is through their influence on niche party competition. It also presents a brief literature review on the effects of electoral systems, and identifies opportunities for future study. Finally, the chapter underlines the normative implications of the book. One implication is that citizens in systems that feature proportional electoral systems are perhaps more satisfied with democracy because they have access to both niche and mainstream pathways of political representation. Nevertheless, the chapter concludes with a generally positive evaluation of the Western European democracies under review on the basis that their citizens have access to at least one, and possibly both niche and mainstream pathways of party representation.

Keywords:   political representation, democracy, Lijphart, Sartori, electoral systems, niche, mainstream, democracy, Western Europe

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