Popular Perceptions of Electoral Integrity: Comparing the Effects of National Conditions

14 March 2019

Abstract

Public attitudes towards electoral integrity matter because fraudulent elections can, for instance, undermine government support or trigger violent uprisings.

This global meta-analysis seeks to identify which national-level factors have the strongest effects on public attitudes towards elections. The article first develops and introduces an index of electoral integrity based on public surveys aggregated from multiple sources. This index covers 135 countries between 1995 and 2016, where data is available. The study then compares this index against national-level variables measuring different political, economic, and social conditions using time-series cross-sectional analysis. Political corruption, government integrity, and fundamental rights are some of the strongest predictors of perceived electoral integrity. Income inequality, income per capita, media freedom, and other factors are also important, but GDP growth and some aspects of the political system have weak effects.

This article provides a starting point for further research and subsequent respondent-level analysis. The findings could inform efforts to restore trust in electoral processes or help to consolidate democracy internationally. The index uses data formatted for Human Understanding Measured Across National (HUMAN) Surveys, which can be applied to many other research topics. 

 

About the speaker

Dr Andrew Klassen lectures in political science at the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts, and Society at Charles Darwin University. He researches how political systems, institutions, policies, and national contexts affect public attitudes, opinions, and behavior. His research uses multiple cross-national public opinion surveys to analyze attitudes towards government, elections, and democracy. This has led to the creation of a comparative public opinion resource: Human Understanding Measured Across National (HUMAN) Surveys. It combines hundreds of survey datasets and currently includes about 8 million respondents from over 160 countries since 1962. The HUMAN Surveys formatting scripts are currently being setup to enable crowdsourced development and collaborative research.


Event details

  • When: 1.00pm - 2.30pm
  • Where: Social Sciences Building Room 441, Science Road, University of Sydney, Camperdown
  • Cost: Free
  • Contact:
    Professor Laura Shepherd


Popular Perceptions of Electoral Integrity: Comparing the Effects of National Conditions

Where Social Sciences Building Room 441, Science Road, University of Sydney, Camperdown When

14 March 2019


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