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polidoc.net- The Political Documents Archive

The Political Documents Archive contains election manifestos, coalition agreements, government declarations and various other documents of political actors from developed democracies. Currently, the archive builds on a stock of more than 3000 political documents from 20 European countries. The aim of the repository is to provide political texts in order to facilitate scholarly research in different areas of comparative politics such as party competition, coalition politics, legislative decision-making or electoral behavior. Furthermore, the archive includes party manifestos for regional elections in several European democracies. Because the process of European integration resulted in a strengthening of regions in EU member states and in countries that want to join the European Union, the relevance of the regional level for political decision-making has increased during the last decades. Therefore, also the policy profiles of regional parties are required to get a full picture of democratic responsiveness in European states across all levels of the political system. The collection of regional manifestos was supported by the COHESIFY project, funded under the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. The aim of COHESIFY is to study whether the European Structural and Investment Funds affect people’s support for and identification with the European project.

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The archive is freely accessible and meant to foster rigorous research in these areas by enabling scholars to produce valid and reliable findings from empirical studies of textual data rather than unnecessarily struggling to obtain and process texts. While polidoc.net is an open access archive it also aims to establish a network for exchanging and accessing political text data once it has been checked for errors and assured for quality. The archive therefore encourages researchers to share their documents with others. We invite everybody to participate in this project so that the political science community can easily make use of already collected documents.

About the Archive

The archive is maintained by Thomas Bräuninger (University of Mannheim), Marc Debus (University of Mannheim) and Kenneth Benoit (London School of Economics and Political Science). If data are used in publications etc. please refer to the Political Documents Archive as data source:

Kenneth Benoit, Thomas Bräuninger, and Marc Debus. 2009. “Challenges for estimating policy preferences: Announcing an open access archive of political documents.” German Politics 18(3): 440-453.
(doi: 10.1080/09644000903055856) show article.

Please refer additionally to the following article when using data of parties from the regional level:
Gross, Martin and Marc Debus (2018): "Does EU regional policy increase parties’ support for European integration?", West European Politics 41 (3): 594-614.
You can access the article here.

And for German subnational manifestos before 1990:
Pappi, Franz Urban and Nicole Seher. 2014. "Die Politikpositionen der deutschen Landtagsparteien und ihr Einfluss auf die Koalitionsbildung". In: Eric Linhart, Bernhard Kittel, André Bächtiger (Eds), Räumliche Modelle der Politik. Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 171-205; as well as: Pappi, Franz Urban and Nicole Seher. 2009. "Party Election Programmes, Signalling Policies and Salience of Specific Policy Domains: The German Parties from 1990 to 2005". German Politics 18(3): 403-425.

Replication Data

Thomas Bräuninger, Marc Debus, Jochen Müller and Christian Stecker. 2020. Parteienwettbewerb in den deutschen Bundesländern. Wiesbaden: Springer VS. Data Set (Stata).