author={Nathalie Giger and Jan Rosset and Julian Bernauer},
  pages={47 - 61}
Due to diverging levels of political influence of various income groups, political institutions likely reflect the policy preferences of certain groups of citizens better than others, independently of their numerical weight. This runs counter the egalitarian principle of ‘one citizen, one vote’. The present article documents a general trend of underrepresentation of the preferences of relatively poor citizens both by parties and by governments across Western democracies, although important… 
More Money, Fewer Problems? Cross-Level Effects of Economic Deprivation on Political Representation
While equal political representation of all citizens is a fundamental democratic goal, it is hampered empirically in a multitude of ways. This study examines how the societal level of economic
Unequal Representation by Parties: Explanations Based on the Elites’ Side of the Representation Process
This chapter explores the link between the economic resources of candidates and their policy preferences, as well as their relative position within party structures. The analyses show that
Who Represents the Poor? Evidence from Swiss Direct Democracy
Analyses of the political representation of different income groups have been plagued by a number of problems. Most importantly, it has proved difficult to measure policy-makers’ and citizens’
The Unequal Representation of Income Groups and Direct Democracy
In many democracies, policymakers and policy outcomes are highly biased towards the preferences of the affluent, although they only constitute a minority of voters. As a consequence, scholars and
Social Context and Economic Biases in Representation
This article explores the role of political context in shaping economic biases in representation—the degree to which wealthy citizens’ views are more strongly represented than poorer citizens’ views
Political Inequality in Affluent Democracies : The Social Welfare Deficit
I examine the relationship between public opinion and social spending in thirty affluent democracies over the past three decades. I find that governments’ responsiveness to citizens’ preferences was
Explaining Unequal Representation
There are several channels through which economic inequality might translate into inequalities in political representation. In particular, individual characteristics of voters such as participation
Mind the gap: Do proportional electoral systems foster a more equal representation of women and men, poor and rich?
Female gender and low income are two markers for groups that have been historically disadvantaged within most societies. The study explores two research questions related to their political
Democracy or Oligarchy? Unequal Representation of Income Groups in European Institutions
In this study we examine the representation of income groups in two EU-level institutions, the Council and the European Parliament. We find that the political positions of these institutions, and
Are the Policy Preferences of Relatively Poor Citizens Under-represented in the Swiss Parliament?
The principle of equal political representation can be undermined by differences in economic resources among citizens. Poor citizens are likely to hold policy preferences that differ from those of


▪ Abstract Two large research programs have analyzed election-based connections between citizens and policy makers in different democracies. Studies of vote-seat representation in the tradition of
Inequality and the Dynamics of Public Opinion: The Self-Reinforcing Link Between Economic Inequality and Mass Preferences
This article assesses the influence of income inequality on the public's policy mood. Recent work has produced divergent perspectives on the relationship between inequality, public opinion, and
Congruence between Citizens and Policymakers in Two Visions of Liberal Democracy
This paper explores two quite different visions of the democratic processes that can create congruence between citizen preferences and public policies. In the Majority Control vision, electoral
Income, Preferences, and the Dynamics of Policy Responsiveness
A variety of measures indicate that income inequality has grown significantly in the United States during the last three decades (APSA 2004; Brandolini and Smeeding 2006). In a flurry of recent
The Inverse Relationship Between Party Strength and Executive Strength: A Theory of Politicians' Constitutional Choices
  • M. Shugart
  • Political Science
    British Journal of Political Science
  • 1998
Constitutions devised by rank-and-file legislative politicians in the ‘Third Wave’ of democratization tend to exhibit an inverse relationship between party strength and executive strength. Party
Unequal Political Participation in Europe
The fact that social stratification factors are closely related to different levels of political participation is a classical issue that has relevant normative as well as explanatory implications for
On the Limits to Inequality in Representation
The correspondence between public preferences and public policy is a critical rationale for representative democratic government. This view has been put forward in the theoretical literature on
Inequality and Democratic Responsiveness
By allowing voters to choose among candidates with com- peting policy orientations and by providing incentives for incumbents to shape policy in the direction the public desires, elections are
Are Voters Better Represented?
Studies of political participation and representation often contend that elected officials respond more to the preferences of voters than those of nonvoters, but seldom test this claim. This is a
Expert Interpretations of Party Space and Party Locations in 42 Societies
The terms `left' and `right' are widely used to organize party competition and to shape connections between citizens and political parties. Recent and dramatic changes in the world, however, raise