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Predicting Party SizesThe Logic of Simple Electoral Systems$
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Rein Taagepera

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199287741

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199287741.001.0001

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What Can We Expect from Electoral Laws?

What Can We Expect from Electoral Laws?

(p.269) 17 What Can We Expect from Electoral Laws?
Predicting Party Sizes

Rein Taagepera (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

We now expect to be able to fine-tune simple electoral laws to effect party systems and government stability positively, but we still need to be cautious. We should not expect to be able to tailor complex electoral laws to desired goals. In institutional design, we need to consider marginal adjustments rather than flipping to completely different electoral laws. We should consider keeping the same electoral laws for at least three elections before changing them. Political science has been an intellectual field separate from politics, but the two may now start to connect, thanks to advances in the study of electoral systems and party systems.

Keywords:   party system, government stability, simple electoral laws, complex electoral laws, institutional design, political science, politics, electoral systems

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