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Clarity of responsibility: how government cohesion conditions performance voting

Hobolt, Sara, Tilley, James and Banducci, Susan (2013) Clarity of responsibility: how government cohesion conditions performance voting. European Journal of Political Research, 52 (2). pp. 164-187. ISSN 0304-4130

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Identification Number: 10.1111/j.1475-6765.2012.02072.x


Recent literature has shown that the long established link between economic performance and electoral outcomes is conditioned by a country's institutions and government, what is often termed ‘clarity of responsibility’. In this article two distinct dimensions of the clarity of the political context are identified: institutional and government clarity. The first captures the formal dispersion of government power, both horizontally and vertically. The second captures the cohesion of the incumbent government. Analysing survey data from 27 European countries, it is shown that voters' ability to hold governments to account, for both the economy and management of public services, is primarily influenced by the extent to which there is an identifiable and cohesive incumbent, whereas formal institutional rules have no direct impact on performance voting.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2012 European Consortium for Political Research
Divisions: European Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
J Political Science > JC Political theory
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D7 - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making > D72 - Economic Models of Political Processes: Rent-Seeking, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2012 14:29
Last Modified: 18 Jun 2024 07:15
Projects: RES-062-23-1622
Funders: United Kingdom's Economic Social and Research Council

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