Quaderni dell'Osservatorio elettorale QOE - IJES 2021-11-16T07:41:19+00:00 QOE Editorial Board Open Journal Systems <p><strong>Italian Journal of Electoral Studies QOE - IJES&nbsp;</strong>is an international scientific journal dedicated to all different dimensions of elections and voting.</p> <p>Founded in 1977 by Mario Caciagli (University of Florence), QOE-IJES is a reference for electoral studies in Italy. Almost half a century later, QOE-IJES is now the official journal of the Italian Society for Electoral Studies (SISE) thanks to an agreement between the SISE and the Regione Toscana. The Journal aims at continuing publishing high-quality original papers from both Italian and international scholars, with the aim to further becoming a major outlet of elections and voting, public opinion, political behavior, and party studies in Italy and beyond.</p> <p>Along with the contributions of established scholars, the journal hosts and encourages the work of younger researchers.</p> Italy in times of protest and negative voting: An introduction 2021-11-15T20:51:43+00:00 Diego Garzia Gianluca Passarelli <p class="p1">The classic heuristics of voting behaviour have been eroded overtime especially in well-established democracies. Ideology, party identification, and social class have been gradually replaced by short-period factors. In particular, the personalization has represented an innovative variable that significantly contributes to explain voting behaviour. Cross-pressures between party identification, candidate assessments and issue preferences paved the way to the diffusion of protest voting, both against the élite and the system. In this respect, Italy represents a very interesting case from both a theoretical and an empirical point view considering the presence of protest parties and the important diffusion of anti-system movements which surfed the protest to consolidate their positions. The editors conceived this special issue aiming at analysing and measuring the impact of protest/negative voting in Italy between 2016 and 2020, a period in which protest parties and voters’ discontent have significantly increased. Data presented by the different papers confirm, albeit under different perspectives, the relevance of this peculiar form of political behaviour.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2021-11-12T07:50:54+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Diego Garzia, Gianluca Passarelli Il disallineamento tra orientamenti elettorali e posizioni sui temi: una questione giovanile o di famiglia politica? 2021-11-15T20:52:13+00:00 Dario Tuorto <p class="p1">The transformation of politics in contemporary democracies has led to the emergence of a new ideological conflict, alongside the traditional left-right scheme, described as liberal–authoritarian or cosmopolitan–nationalist cleavage (Kriesi et al. 2008; Hooghe and Marks 2002). This change brought to a redefinition of the linkages between issue and voting preferences, as many voters decide to support a party regardless of their positions on issues while voting for the same party. Within such framework, the contribute of the new generations to the growth of the electoral dealignment and volatility has been largely analysed (Miller et al. 1996; Franklin 2004; Plutzer 2002). Issue incongruency is part of the process. Young people are often considered to be tolerant and inclusive because they grew up under prosperous and secure conditions and developed post-materialist values of freedom, multiculturalism, progressivism (Inglehart and Welzel 2005; Janmaat and Keating 2019). However, the perspective of left-cosmopolitans engaged in electoral politics contrasts with the image of economically-insecure left-behind group of young people who don’t share the same progressive values (Bartle et al. 2020; Sloam and Henn 2019) and support right-wing political parties. What is still unknown is the extent to which extreme ideological traits and attitudes (e.g. negative discourses on immigration) combine with positions of openness on individual freedom. Likewise, the same contradiction can be found among left-wing voters who assume liberal position on economy or those economically left and culturally conservative. The article aims at analysing the relationship between issue positions and vote (propensity to vote). We test the hypotheses of a coherent vs incoherent ideological space by looking at the structure of voters’ preferences on economic (State vs. free market) as well as cultural issues (individual rights, attitudes towards minorities, European integration) and the differences between young people and older component of the electorate. The analysis is focused on the Italian case. Data are taken from the 2020 Itanes survey.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2021-09-06T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Dario Tuorto Protest against the politicians: Vote switching in the Italian 2016-2020 constitutional referenda 2021-11-15T20:52:06+00:00 Matthew E. Bergman Gianluca Passarelli <p class="p1">Referenda provide the opportunity for voters to express political economic protest and provide additional ways to support parties they vote for in elections. Alternatively, referenda also provide voters a chance to express their policy references in a way that does not affect which party will lead the government. The rejection of the 2016 Italian Constitutional referendum by 60% of voters and the approval the 2020 Italian Constitutional Referendum by 70% of voters could be a result of changing political economic conditions, influences related to partisanship and party leadership, or a change in approval of the reforms contained within the referendum. The article examines these possibilities in turn and then in a multivariate analysis.&nbsp;First, the overall change in&nbsp;economic discontent, satisfaction with the governing coalition and leaders, and belief in the content of the reforms between 2016 and 2020&nbsp;will be examined. We also examine the how voters of each of the parties in the 2018 general election shifted on these variables. Then individual level analysis of consistent voters and switchers will assess the relative strength of partisanship, economic, political, and&nbsp;referendum-specific factors in convincing voters to switch their vote. We find that referendum-specific factors had the strongest predictive power followed by those related to government approval. Voters approved of the contents that would reduce the number of politicians in Italy and used the referendum to express support or displeasure with the incumbent’s policy programme. Our results contribute to the studies on second-order elections where voters are allowed for greater expressive preferences.</p> 2021-09-13T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Matthew E. Bergman, Gianluca Passarelli Where has the protest gone? Populist attitudes and electoral flows in Italian political turmoil 2021-11-16T07:41:19+00:00 Fabio Bordignon Luigi Ceccarini <p class="p1">What happens when anti-establishment political actors gain strength, enter institutions, and even become the new establishment? To what extent are their electoral profiles and the demands behind them normalised by the system? This article uses ITANES surveys to investigate voters’ reactions to the different paths taken by the three main protagonists of the 2016-2020 Italian populist wave: the M5S, the Lega, and FDI. In particular, it uses panel data to study the evolution of populist attitudes and protest drivers, as well as their connection with electoral flows and parties’ strategic choices. The most striking change concerns the redefinition of the political outlook of 5-star voters, who have significantly reduced their populist stances. However, the transformation of the M5S into a government party produced significant outflows of voters who already in 2016 expressed greater resentment towards political elites. These dynamics have largely favoured parties of the populist right – the Lega and then especially FDI – which have preserved or even reinforced their (electoral) profile as anti-establishment parties.</p> 2021-11-01T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Fabio Bordignon, Luigi Ceccarini Think different? Populist attitudes and their consequences on vote behaviour in the 2016 and 2020 italian constitutional referenda 2021-11-15T20:51:55+00:00 Mauro Bertolotti Claudia Leone Patrizia Catellani <p class="p1">Following the rise of populist parties and leaders in the last decade, research has extensively investigated the political and economic factors that have driven some voters towards populism. Less research has been devoted to the individual psychological factors associated with populist attitudes, and to how those can influence political decisions, such as vote choice in an election or referendum. In this study, we analysed data from the 2016 and 2020 ITANES panel surveys, where populist attitudes were measured by a 6-item scale. Findings indicate that populist attitudes were associated with relevant psychosocial factors, such as nationalism, political efficacy, and conspiracist beliefs. Populist attitudes in turn explained part of the variance in vote choice at both referenda, after controlling for the evaluation of the reform and political orientation. Furthermore, we found that voters with strong populist attitudes were more likely to engage in motivated reasoning in the form of the biased evaluation of the foreseeability of the referendum results, making simplified and self-reassuring evaluations aligned with their vote choice. The discussion focuses on how populism as a political phenomenon can be rooted in relevant individual differences in the psychological features of voters.</p> 2021-10-25T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Mauro Bertolotti, Claudia Leone, Patrizia Catellani Losers get sick? The effects of electoral defeat on perceptions of pandemic risk 2021-11-15T20:46:18+00:00 Giuliano Bobba Moreno Mancosu Franca Roncarolo Antonella Seddone Federico Vegetti <p class="p1">Research in political behavior shows that citizens update their past perceptions and future expectations over several phenomena depending on whether their favorite party wins or loses the elections. This bias is explained by different psychological mechanisms triggered by individuals’ attachment and trust in political parties. In this paper we investigate whether such a winner-loser effect conditions people’s concerns about the Covid-19 pandemic. We leverage the occurrence of regional elections in six Italian regions in September 2020, right at the onset of the second wave of the pandemic in the country, to test whether supporting a candidate who won/lost the elections affects (1) people’s fear to get sick with Covid-19, and (2) their expectation about the gravity of the upcoming second wave. Given that the public healthcare system in Italy is managed by the regions, we expect supporters of the losing candidate to lose trust in the region’s ability to deal with the pandemic, hence increasing their personal concerns. We test this expectation using pre-/post-election panel data, and employing respondents from the other regions who voted at a concurrent referendum as a placebo group. Our results show that, while overall concerns tend to decrease from the first to the second wave, for elections losers they remain unchanged. This indicates that losing an election, albeit second-order, can affect citizens’ outlook on future events in domains that are largely beyond political control.</p> 2021-08-30T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2021 Giuliano Bobba, Moreno Mancosu, Franca Roncarolo, Antonella Seddone, Federico Vegetti