Changing the issues of the electoral arena: do parties and voters move together?

  • Berta BarbetEmail author
Original Article


Electoral dynamics are linked to a set of cleavages that divide the electorate among groups of voters. These cleavages are theorized to be behind the electoral coalitions formed, and their change is supposed to trigger electoral realignments. That said, not much is known about the ways in which these cleavages change beyond studies analysing big, drastic and unusual realignments. Combining a wide array of data sources, this paper is able to test, in a cross-sectional and dynamic way, the relationship between the cleavages emphasized at the party debate and the cleavages associated with voters’ behaviour. It proves that the links between the two spheres are more complicated than sometimes assumed. The finding has important implications for the understanding of party competition dynamics and electoral mandates.


Elections Party competition Electoral behaviour Agenda-setting Political space 


Supplementary material

41295_2019_153_MOESM1_ESM.docx (173 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 172 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Limited 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dep. Ciencia Política y Derecho Público, Facultad de Ciencias Políticas y SociologiaUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaCerdanyola del Vallès, BarcelonaSpain

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