A comparative spatial analysis of majoritarian and proportional elections

Jay K. Dow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademic

86 Citations (Scopus)


This study estimates spatial representations of recent elections in Canada, France, The Netherlands and Israel. Its purpose is to test whether there exist systematic differences in the extent of spatial dispersion among parties and candidates in the majoritarian and proportional electoral systems. Canada and France are majoritarian systems, while The Netherlands and Israel are highly proportional. The study uses a measure of central tendency developed by Kollman; Kollman and Kollman and non-parametric statistical tests to compare the relative dispersion of parties and candidates across the maps. The analysis reveals that parties and candidates in the majoritarian systems are located significantly closer to the center of the distribution of voters than those in proportional systems. The estimated spatial maps also provide information useful for interpreting the bases of electoral politics in each country.
Original languageUndefined
Pages (from-to)109-125
JournalElectoral studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • IR-61233

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