(Un)intended Consequences of EU Parliamentary Elections

ISBN: 9780198757412

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Fecha de edición 21/01/2016
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ISBN: 9780198757412 Autor: Categorias: ,

When direct elections for the European Parliament were first organized in 1979, the idea was that such direct elections would increase the democratic legitimacy and accountability of the Parliament. Moreover, the elections were expected to raise public interest, engagement and support for the European project. Did these elections help to increase legitimacy and accountability? Did they increase interest in and support for the ‘European project’? Or, did these elections have unintended (and perhaps undesirable) consequences? This volume focuses on the consequences of European elections for public debate and involvement, for party systems, and for public opinion. 

EP elections have caused a number of intended consequences: the salience of the elections in the media has gone up and over time electoral competition becomes more important, engaging in the campaign can help improve EU evaluations, and Europe as a topic has become more important for voting at EP elections, boosting the prevalence of so-called EU voting. A number of intended consequences have not materialized during the life of the EP so far: knowledge or turnout levels have not gone up and citizens have not become better at judging what political parties are offering. The EP elections have, however, also yielded a number of unintended consequences: EP elections dampen turnout for first time voters in subsequent elections, EP elections cause temporary decline in EU support, and the elections have become a strategic arena for political parties to position themselves on EU issues and for new movements and parties to boost or sustain their success.

1: Introduction, Wouter van der Brug and Claes de Vreese
Part 1: Consequences of European elections for public debate and political involvement
2: Do European elections create a European public sphere?, Hajo Boomgaarden and Claes de Vreese
3: The EU Issue Space, Party Competition and News Coverage of EP Elections, Chris Hanretty and Susan Banducci
4: Knowing Europe? The Causes and Consequences of (Lacking) Knowledge about the EU across Time and Space, Jürgen Maier
5: How European elections decrease turnout, Mark Franklin and Sara Hobolt
Part 2: Consequences of European elections for party systems
6: EU Issue Voting in National and European Parliamentary Elections, Catherine de Vries and Sara Hobolt
7: How European elections affect national party systems: On the survival of newly established parties, Radoslaw Markowski
8: Campaigning on or downplaying EU integration? Explaining the salience parties attach to EU matters in European Parliamentary election campaigns, Silke Adam and Michaela Maier
9: Eurosceptic vote deviation and the impact of news media, Sylvia Kritzinger and David Johann
Part 3: Consequences of European elections for attitudes towards Europe
10: The Negative Effect of Elections to the European Parliament on Diffuse Support for the European Project, Laurie Beaudennet and Mark Franklin
11: Talking it up or talking it down? How national democracy conditions the relationship between talking about and expressing democratic satisfaction with European politics, Hajo Boomgaarden
12: Effects of News Media Coverage on Public Support for European integration, Claes de Vreese & Hajo Boomgaarden
13: European Elections, Euroscepticism and support for anti-EU parties, Wouter van der Brug
Part 4: Looking ahead
14: Conclusion, Claes de Vreese & Wouter van der Brug