The content and nature of political competition in Europe: conceptualizing political space and axis of party competition Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Rovny, Jan
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Political Science
  • This paper aims to address how political competition can be theoretically comprehended, and what accounts for the variance in the content of political competition in different European polities. To answer these questions, it builds on spatial theory of politics, and develops two additional concepts: political space and axis of competition. Political space is understood as a landscape of contested political issues, which combine into a small number of dimensions, while the axis of competition depicts the particular combination of issues disputed in a given political system. After conceptualizing these terms, the paper addresses the empirical expression of political space and axis of competition in Europe. Finally, this work analyzes individual vote choice, underlining the linkage between individual political preferences and the variation of axes of competition across the European continent.
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  • Marks, Gary
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  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Open access

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