Issue Competition in Western Europe: A Research Agenda

09.10.2017 - 12:00 to 13:30
Location : 
A 5,6 Raum A 231
Type of Event : 
AB B-Kolloquium
Prof. Lorenzo De Sio
Lecturer affiliation: 
LUISS Guido Carli University Rome

In a period marked by the weakening of traditional ideological alignments and the rise of new 'challenger' parties, the dominant models of voting choice and party competition, based on traditional ideological alignments, seem to be put into question, both at the level of citizens and of parties. In particular, both mainstream and challenger parties appear to increasingly exploit ideology-lite, issue-based strategies that cut across ideological lines. 'Issue yield' theory has been proposed as a general model of party competition suitable for analyzing this new context, as it assumes that parties compete through the selective emphasis of 'issue packages' selected according to strategic electoral considerations. After briefly introducing the theory, I present a novel research design for analyzing party competition in light of issue yield theory, with detailed results from a 2014 pilot study. Finally, I discuss problems and first results emerging from the implementation of such design on West European countries holding general elections in 2017.