Scientific article
Open access

Short‐term dynamics in issue ownership and electoral choice formation

Published inSchweizerische Zeitschrift für Politikwissenschaft, vol. 24, no. 4, no. Special Issue: The 2015 Swiss National Elections, p. 423-441
Publication date2018

In light of the increased volatility in party preference and alleged importance of issue voting, the scarce knowledge about how short‐term stability and change in issue ownership perceptions influence stability and change of party choice is puzzling. This paper fills a gap by examining whether and to what extent the three pathways of electoral choice formation (activation, conversion and reinforcement) occur in line with the dynamics of issue competence evaluations. Our analysis of panel data from the 2015 Swiss election study shows that the stability and change in issue ownership perceptions is highly consequential. Citizens who change or maintain their competence attribution in favor of a party during the electoral campaign are more likely to activate, convert or reinforce their vote for that party. The results regarding the conditional effects of issue salience are more mixed, but not less interesting.

  • Competence issue ownership
  • Short-term dynamics
  • Electoral choice
  • Issue salience
  • Swiss National Science Foundation - 100017_16548
Citation (ISO format)
PETITPAS, Adrien, SCIARINI, Pascal. Short‐term dynamics in issue ownership and electoral choice formation. In: Schweizerische Zeitschrift für Politikwissenschaft, 2018, vol. 24, n° 4, p. 423–441. doi: 10.1111/spsr.12328
Main files (2)
Article (Published version)
Article (Accepted version)
ISSN of the journal1424-7755

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