Legislative Party Turnover and Electoral Volatility: What Explains the Difference?

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  • 1 Department of Political Sciences and Sociology, European University at St. Petersburg, Russia

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Abstract

This article explores the structural determinants of aggregate change in the party composition of legislative assemblies, i.e. legislative party turnover. To a large extent a product of electoral volatility, it has its own causal dynamics due to the differentiated impact exerted by electoral rules, party system properties, and institutional design upon the two phenomena. The empirical test on elections held in 111 electoral democracies of the world (1992-2014) demonstrates that the impact of institutional factors (including electoral rules, federalism, and presidentialism) and party system nationalization upon legislative party turnover tends to be mitigated in comparison with their effects upon electoral volatility, even though the direction of the impact is almost invariably the same.

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