הרשות למחקר ופיתוח, האוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים

How Electoral Districts Shape Political Outcomes - Prof. Orit Kedar

​​How electorally equal are voters? Whose voice equals more than others'? And what districting schemes lead to greater equality?

We develop and apply a new framework for evaluating electoral systems. We focus on proportional representation with districts, the electoral system found in more than half of democratic states, and draw on a commonly overlooked fact: within countries, some voters cast their ballot in quasi-majoritarian districts of few representatives only while others in large and proportional ones. This within-country institutional variation affects (in)equality of representation.​​

Reconsidering Representation
Voters’ Perspective: French Linguistic Minority in Switzerland
 
French
 
German

Utilizing district-level data from twenty western parliamentary democracies, we find that supporters of right-wing parties and of large parties are overrepresented in parliament. Complementing our within-country with cross-country analysis, we show that controlling for the average district, the share of parliament elected in small districts affects electoral inequality even when large proportional districts are present. Overall, revisiting common belief, we find that districted PR is far from proportional.

Reconsidering Representation
Portugal – Electoral districts by area and number of seats

Utilizing district-level data from twenty western parliamentary democracies, we find that supporters of right-wing parties and of large parties are overrepresented in parliament. Complementing our within-country with cross-country analysis, we show that controlling for the average district, the share of parliament elected in small districts affects electoral inequality even when large proportional districts are present. Overall, revisiting common belief, we find that districted PR is far from proportional.

Research Team: Liran Harsgor, Maayan Mor, Raz A. Sheinerman, Or Tuttnauer, Omer Yair - Department of Political Science, Faculty of Social Sciences

Researcher's website