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The directly elected representatives to Hong Kong's Legislative Council are chosen by list proportional representation (PR) using the Hare Quota and Largest Remainders (HQLR) formula. This formula rewards political alliances of small to moderate size and discourages broader unions. Hong Kong's political leaders have responded to those incentives by fragmenting their electoral alliances rather than expanding them. The level of list fragmentation observed in Hong Kong is not inherent to PR elections. Alternative PR formulas would generate incentives to form broader, more encompassing alliances. Indeed, most countries that use PR employ such formulas, and the most commonly used PR formula would generate incentives opposite to HQLR's, rewarding broader electoral alliances rather than divisions.

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Journal of East Asian Studies
  • ISSN: 1598-2408
  • EISSN: 2234-6643
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