First article featuring data from the Panel of Elected Representatives published
Fort the first time, data from the Panel of Public Representatives are being published in a scientific journal. The article also builds on data from the Norwegian Citizen Panel.
In this open access article, Sveinung Arnesen, Johannes Bergh, Dag Arne Christensen and Bernt Aardal present empirical data from two identical survey experiments, with responses from both voters and politicians. The article is titled "Support for electoral system reform among voters and politicians: Studying information effects through survey experiments". It is being published in Electoral Studies volume 71.
Attitudes to increased proportionality between parties
They find that “voters and politicians are about evenly divided on the question of increased proportionality between parties, but a plurality opposes such a change, especially among politicians. For the electoral reform proposals in this study, there is thus a general preference for the status quo; voters and politicians alike object to changes toward a more proportional electoral system than what we have today”.
In addition, Arnesen et al. make the following discoveries by informing (or priming) the respondents about the design of the parliamentary electoral system:
- voters became less supportive of the reform when learning/being primed about how the changes will be to the benefit of the populous regions and detriment to the outlying districts. Moreover.
- the effects on voters living in counties that lose seats are in the expected negative direction, but not significantly different from other voters.
- politicians, who were more strongly opposed to reform without the information about the consequences, also react negatively, albeit less so than the voters do.
- living in a county presumed to lose seats under the proposal has a strong independent effect on the support for the proposal both among voters and politicians.
Congratulations to the authors for leading the way in publishing work combining our different panels. We look forward to seeing many more!