The “revival of communism” or the effect of institutions?: The 1993 Polish parliamentary elections

  • Marek M. Kaminski
  • Grzegorz Lissowski
  • Piotr Swistak


In several Eastern European countries the breakdown of communism in 1989 was followed by a surprising return to power of post-communist parties. Yet, some electoral victories of post-communists look puzzling when contrasted with a small size of a shift in voters’ preferences that has led to them. Such is the case of the 1993 Polish parliamentary elections. Using partition-function form games and results of simulated elections, we estimate the impact of three factors that were blamed, in addition to the “shift to the left” in voters’ preferences, for the 1993 victory of the post-communists in Poland. We show that the shift to the left was insufficient to assure post-communists an electoral victory, and that this victory would not have happened under the old electoral law or under a unified coalition of the Right. Our results show the high sensitivity of emerging democracies to the details of their institutional backbones.


Partition Function Coalitional Structure Popular Support Electoral Rule Popular Vote 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marek M. Kaminski
    • 1
  • Grzegorz Lissowski
    • 2
  • Piotr Swistak
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PoliticsNew York UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Institute of SociologyWarsaw UniversityWarsaw 64Poland
  3. 3.Department of Government and PoliticsUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

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