Published online by Cambridge University Press: 18 September 2013
Political scientists have contributed to the world of electoral systems as scientists and as engineers. Taking stock of recent scientific research, we show that context modifies the effects of electoral rules on political outcomes in specific and systematic ways. We explore how electoral rules shape the inclusion of women and minorities, the depth and nature of political competition, and patterns of redistribution and regulation, and we consider institutional innovations that could promote political equality. Finally, we describe the diverse ways that political scientists produce an impact on the world by sharing and applying their knowledge of the consequences of electoral rules and global trends in reform.