Revolution, Elite Fear, and Electoral Institutions

  title={Revolution, Elite Fear, and Electoral Institutions},
  author={Haakon Gjerl{\o}w and Magnus Bergli Rasmussen},
  journal={Comparative Politics},
We present a systemic threat theory to explain the introduction of Proportional Representation (PR). If facing a revolutionary threat, incumbents agree to enact electoral reforms such as PR to secure the stability of the parliamentary system, even if this could imply their own personal electoral loss. We argue that the theory can help explain the largest wave of PR adoptions in history, namely in the years immediately after the Bolshevik revolution in 1917. Incumbents came to over-estimate…