Voter perceptions of coalition policy positions in multiparty systems

Author(s)
Thomas Meyer, Daniel Strobl
Abstract

A growing body of research shows how voters consider coalition formation and policy compromises at the post-electoral stage when making vote choices. Yet, we know surprisingly little about how voters perceive policy positions of coalition governments. Using new survey data from the Austrian National Election Study (AUTNES), we study voter perceptions of coalition policy platforms. We find that voters do in general have reasonable expectations of the coalitions’ policy positions. However, partisan beliefs and uncertainty affect how voters perceive coalition positions: in addition to projection biases similar to those for individual party placements, partisans of coalition parties tend to align the position of the coalition with their own party’s policy position, especially for those coalitions they prefer the most. In contrast, there is no consistent effect of political knowledge on the voters’ uncertainty when evaluating coalition policy positions.

Organisation(s)
Department of Government
Journal
Electoral Studies
Volume
41
Pages
80–91
ISSN
0261-3794
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.electstud.2015.11.020
Publication date
11-2015
Peer reviewed
Yes
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
Comparative politics
Portal url
https://ucris.univie.ac.at/portal/en/publications/voter-perceptions-of-coalition-policy-positions-in-multiparty-systems(5362504c-7575-4894-8bcb-6e05d17d1a7f).html