POLCAN2ID#: 1873
Date: 2016-08-31
Time: 00:00:00
Sent by:
Category: Call for Papers
Subject: CfP Workshop - Voters adrift. Consequences of electoral dealignment in representative democracies

Voters adrift. Consequences of Electoral Dealignment in Representative Democracies

2-3 December 2016

Canada Research Chair in Electoral Democracy, Université de Montréal

In many advanced democracies, voters appear to be ‘adrift’ (Andeweg, 1982). Indeed, linkages between citizens and parties are weakening. As a result, voter turnout rates are decreasing, election results are increasingly unstable and party systems are hugely volatile. Political parties, however, are traditionally considered to be at the very heart of democracy. As a result, the erosion of the bonds between citizens and parties – also referred to as dealignment – constitutes a major challenge the functioning of representative democracies.


Are electorates that are ‘adrift’ able to select representatives who will act in their best interest? Are parties adjusting how they are organized and what strategies they implement to convince volatile voters? And is responsiveness endangered by the erosion of the linkages between citizens and parties?


The aim of this two-day workshop is address these research questions and to bring together research addressing this important challenge for democracy. To this end, we welcome studies examining the consequences of dealignment for electoral behaviour, for political parties as well as for democratic representation.


The conference will take the format of a workshop, with ample room for discussion of a selective number of papers. Confirmed keynote speakers for the workshop include Marc Hooghe (University of Leuven), Susan Scarrow (University of Houston) and Christopher Wlezien (University of Texas at Austin). We welcome both senior as well as junior scholars to submit proposals and to attend the workshop.


Paper proposals (max. 500 words) should be submitted before 5 September 2016 to ruth.dassonneville@umontreal.ca. The final program will be communicated by 15 September 2016.


This workshop is organized by the Canada Research Chair in Electoral Democracy at the University of Montreal and is generously supported by the Centre for the Study of Democratic Citizenship.


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