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date: 27 November 2021

Abstract and Keywords

What is the relationship between electoral rules and voter turnout? To answer this question, this chapter begins with the more general question of why voters turn out on Election Day at all. The chapter then reviews the main theoretical arguments and empirical evidence of how electoral rules affect voters’ turnout decisions, as well as the puzzles that have emerged from that literature. It then highlights some recent theoretical, methodological, and empirical advancements using subnational data and electoral system reforms that have refined our understanding about the interaction between electoral rules, competitiveness, and turnout. Finally, the chapter explores new and promising directions for further research.

Keywords: electoral rules, proportionality, competitiveness, elite mobilization, turnout

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