25 AUGUST 2018 #Event

Understanding Electoral Violence Through Complex Textual Data: 20 Years of OSCE Monitoring Missions

ELWar team member Dr. Michal Mochtak is presenting today his latest article at the ECPR General Conference in Hamburg, Germany. The Paper analyses more than 20 years of evidence on electoral violence as reported by OSCE monitoring mission reports. It identifies prevailing trends of electoral violence in Europe, North America, and parts of Asia in order to better understand how the phenomenon is understood and framed by one of the most important international monitoring organizations in the region. The analysis utilizes a unique approach based on automated content analysis employing counting algorithms and latent semantic indexing. The analysis is based on an original corpus consisting of 362 documents and more than 8000 pages of text. The collection of documents scraped from the OSCE official website was manually cleaned and coded and will be freely available to academic community and general public in the near future. The results of the analysis show how the phenomenon of electoral violence has changed in the past 20 years and how the textual data can be used for its better understanding.


21 APRIL 2018 #InTheNews

Zašto hrvatski birači više vole političare koji su rastrošni?

“Žele li birači fiskalno restriktivnu ili ekspanzivnu vlast? Vrednuju li proračunsku odgovornost ili im je ipak draže da se javni novac troši? Na ova pitanja politička ekonomija još nije dala jednoznačan odgovor. Niz studija pokazao je kako su glasači u razvijenim demokracijama poput SAD-a, Kanade ili Švedske fiskalno konzervativni, odnosno da vrednuju vlast koja odgovorno troši javni novac i ne ulazi u deficit. S druge strane, niz drugih studija pokazao je potpuno suprotno koristeći primjere iz država poput Argentine, Brazila, Rusije i Španjolske. Glasači u tim državama na izborima nagrađuju vlastodršce proporcionalno njihovoj javnoj potrošnji. Što se više troši – veći je i broj glasova.”


19 APRIL 2018 #Publication

Post-war voters as fiscal liberals: local elections, spending, and war trauma in contemporary Croatia

This study exposes post-war voters’ fiscal liberalism using individual-level and aggregate-level data covering a decade and a half of local electoral competition in post-war Croatia. Aggregate-level analysis shows Croatian voters’ fiscal liberalism to be conditional on their communities’ exposure to war violence: greater exposure to violence leads to greater support for fiscally expansionist incumbents. Individual-level analysis, on the other hand, shows post-war voters’ fiscal liberalism as rooted in their different levels of war-related trauma: more feelings of war-related trauma lead to greater economic expectations from the government. Our analysis also shows that voters’ war-conditioned preferences for fiscally expansionist incumbents show little sign of abating over time – a testament to the challenge presented by post-war recovery, and to the impact war exerts on political life long after the bloodshed has ended.



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