Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Timing of Vote Decision in First and Second Order Dutch Elections 1978–1995: Evidence from Artificial Neural Networks

  • Rob Eisinga, Philip Hans Franses and Dick van Dijk

Abstract

A time series (t = 921) of weekly survey data on vote intentions in the Netherlands for the period 1978–1995 shows that the percentage of undecided voters follows a cyclical pattern over the election calendar. The otherwise substantial percentage of undecided voters decreases sharply in weeks leading up to an election and gradually increases afterwards. This article models the dynamics of this asymmetric electoral cycle using artificial neural networks, with the purpose of estimating when the undecided voters start making up their minds. We find that they begin to decide which party to vote for nine weeks before a first order national parliamentary election and one to four weeks before a second order election, depending on the type of election (European Parliament, Provincial States, City-councils). The effect of political campaigns and the implications for political analysis are discussed.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Dick van Dijk, Tinbergen Institute, P.O. Box 1738, NL-3000 DR Rotterdam, the Netherlands, e-mail: djvandijk@few.eur.nl. GAUSS programs estimate parameters in artificial neural networks will soon be available at http://www.few.eur.nl/few/people/franses/.

Footnotes

Hide All

Our thanks to Walter Mebane and Jonathan Wand.

Footnotes

References

Hide All
Abramson, Paul R., and Aldrich, John H. 1982. “The Decline of Electoral Participation in America.” American Political Science Review 76: 502–21.
Aldrich, John H. 1993. “Rational Choice and Turnout.” American Journal of Political Science 37: 246–78.
Anderson, Barbara A., and Silver, Brian D. 1986. “Measurement and Mis-measurement of the Validity of the Self-reported Vote.” American Journal of Political Science 30: 771–85.
Armingeon, Klaus. 1994. “Gründe und Folgen Geringer Wahlbeteiligung.” Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie 46: 4364.
Beck, Paul Allen. 1979. “The Electoral Cycle and Patterns of American Politics.” British Journal of Political Science 9: 129–56.
Bowen, Lawrence. 1994. “Time of Voting Decision and Use of Political Advertising: The Slade Gorton-Brock Adams Senatorial Campaign.” Journalism Quarterly 71: 665–75.
Bürklin, Wilhelm P. 1987. “Why Study Political Cycles?European Journal of Political Research 15: 131–43.
Caldeira, Gregory A., Clausen, Aage R., and Patterson, Samuel C. 1990. “Partisan Mobilization and Electoral Participation.” Electoral Studies 9: 191204.
Chaffee, Steven H., and Choe, Sun Yuel. 1980. “Time of Decision and Media Use during the Ford-Carter Campaign.” Public Opinion Quarterly 44: 5369.
Chen, Kevin. 1992. Political Alienation and Voting Turnout in the United States, 1960-1988. San Francisco: Mellen Research University Press.
Clubb, Jerome M., Flanigan, William H., and Zingale, Nancy H. 1980. Partisan Realigment: Voters, Parties, and Government in American History. Beverly Hills: Sage Library of Social Research.
Cox, Gary W., and Munger, Michael C. 1989. “Closeness, Expenditures, and Turnout in the 1982 U.S. House Elections.” American Political Science Review 83: 217231.
Eisinga, Rob, and Felling, Albert. 1992. Confessional and Electoral Alignments in the Netherlands 1962-1992. Amsterdam: Steinmetz Archive.
Erikson, Robert S., and Tedin, Kent L. 1995. American Public Opinion. Its Origin, Content, and Impact. 5th ed. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
Fenster, Mark J. 1994. “The Impact of Allowing Day of Registration Voting on Turnout in the U.S. Elections from 1960 to 1992. A Research Note.” American Politics Quarterly 22: 7487.
Ferejohn, John, and Fiorina, Morris. 1974. “The Paradox of Not Voting: A Decision Theoretic Analysis.” American Political Science Review 68: 525–36.
Finkel, Steven E., and Schrott, Peter R. 1995. “Campaign Effects on Voter Choice in the German Election of 1990.” British Journal of Political Science 25: 349–78.
Flickinger, Richard S., and Studlar, Donley T. 1992. “The Disappearing Voters? Exploring Declining Turnout in Western European Elections.” West European Politics 15: 116.
Franses, Philip Hans, and Draisma, Gerrit. 1997. “Recognizing Changing Seasonal Patterns Using Artificial Neural Networks.” Journal of Econometrics 81: 273280.
Granger, Clive W.J., King, Maxwell L., and White, Halbert. 1995. “Comments on Testing Economic Theories and the Use of Model Selection Criteria.” Journal of Econometrics 67: 173–88.
Hill, Kim Quaile, and Hurley, Patricia A. 1984. “Nonvoters in Voters’ Clothing: The Impact of Voting Behavior Misreporting on Voting Behavior Research.” Social Science Quarterly 65: 199206.
Hirczy, Wolfgang. 1994. “The Impact of Mandatory Voting Laws on Turnout: A Quasi-Experimental Approach.” Electoral Studies 13: 6476.
Hofstetter, C. R. 1973. “Inter-party Competition and Electoral Turnout.” American Journal of Political Science 17: 351–66.
Huckfeldt, Robert, and Sprague, John. 1992. “Political Parties and Electoral Mobilization: Political Structure, Social Structure, and the Party Canvass.” American Political Science Review 86: 7086.
Jackman, Robert W., and Miller, Ross A. 1995. “Voter Turnout in the Industrial Democracies during the 1980s.” Comparative Political Studies 27: 467–92.
Kavanagh, Dennis. 1981. Public Opinion Polls. In Democracy at the Polls: A Comparative Study of Competitive National Elections, ed. Butler, David, Penniman, Howard R., and Ranney, Austin. Washington, DC: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. Pp. 196215.
Koole, Ruud. 1992. De Opkomst van de Moderne Kaderpartij [The Rise of the Modern Cadre Party]. Utrecht: Spectrum.
Kuan, Chung-Ming, and Liu, Tung. 1995. “Forecasting Exchange Rates Using Feedforward and Recurrent Neural Networks.” Journal of Applied Econometrics 10: 347–64.
Kuan, Chung-Ming, and White, Halbert. 1994. “Artificial Neural Networks: An Econometric Perspective.” Econometric Reviews 13: 1143 (with discussion).
Marsh, Catherine. 1984. “Back on the Bandwagon: The Effect of Opinion Polls on Public Opinion.” British Journal of Political Science 15: 5174.
Marsh, Catherine. 1985. “Predictions of Voting Behaviour from a Pre-election Survey.” Political Studies 33: 642–48.
Matsusaka, John G. 1993. “Election Closeness and Voter Turnout: Evidence from California Ballot Propositions.” Public Choice 76: 313–34.
Morgan, Michael, and Shanahan, James. 1992. “Television Viewing and Voting 1972-1989.” Electoral Studies 11: 320.
Nardulli, Peter F., Dalager, Jon K., and Greco, Donald E. 1996. “Voter Turnout in U.S. Presidential Elections: An Historical View and Some Speculation.” PS: Political Science & Politics 26: 480–90.
Nownes, Anthony J. 1992. “Primaries, General Elections, and Voter Turnout: A Multinominal Logit Model of the Decision to Vote.” American Politics Quarterly 20: 205–26.
Pacek, Alexander, and Radcliff, Benjamin. 1995. “Turnout and the Vote for Left-of-Centre Parties: A Cross-National Analysis.” British Journal of Political Science 25: 137–43.
Pettersen, Per Amt. 1989. “Comparing Non-voters in the USA and Norway: Permanence versus Transience.” European Journal of Political Research 17: 351–59.
Powell, G. Bingham Jr. 1986. “American Voter Turnout in Comparative Perspective.” American Political Science Review 80: 1743.
Ramsey, James B., and Rothman, Philip. 1996. “Time Irreversibility and Business Cycle Asymmetry.” Journal of Money, Credit and Banking 28: 121.
Reif, Karlheinz. 1984. “National Electoral Cycles and European Elections 1979 and 1984.” Electoral Studies 3: 244–55.
Reif, Karlheinz. 1985. “Ten Second-Order National Elections.” In Ten European Elections, ed. Reif, Karlheinz. Gower: Aldershot. Pp. 136.
Reif, Karlheinz, and Schmitt, Hermann. 1980. “Nine Second-Order National Elections—A Conceptual Framework for the Analysis of European Election Results.” European Journal of Political Research 8: 344.
Ripley, Brian D. 1993. “Statistical Aspects of Neural Networks.” In Chaos and Networks—Statistical and Probabilistic Aspects, ed. Barndorff-Nielsen, O., Jensen, J. and Kendall, W. London: Chapman and Hall. Pp. 40123.
Ripley, Brian D. 1994. “Neural Networks and Related Methods for Classification (with discussion).” Journal of the Royal Statistical Society B 56: 409–56.
Ripley, Brian D. 1996. Pattern Recognition and Neural Networks. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Shaffer, Stephen D. 1981. “A Multivariate Explanation of Decreasing Turnout in Presidential Elections, 1960-1976.” American Journal of Political Science 25: 6895.
Sichel, Daniel E. 1993. “Business Cycle Asymmetry: A Deeper Look.” Economic Inquiry 31: 224–36.
Sichel, Daniel E. 1994. “Inventories and the Three Phases of the Business Cycle.” Journal of Business and Economic Statistics 12: 269–77.
Sigelman, Lee. 1982. “The Nonvoting Voter in Voting Research.” American Journal of Political Science 26: 4756.
Sigelman, Lee, and Knight, Kathleen. 1985. “Expectation/Disillusion and Presidential Popularity: The Reagan Experience.” Public Opinion Quarterly 49: 209–13.
Smeets, Ingrid. 1995. “Facing Another Gap: An Exploration of the Discrepancies between Voting Turnout in Survey Research and Official Statistics.” Acta Politica 30: 307334.
Southwell, Priscilla. 1995. “Alienation and Nonvoting in the 1992 Presidential Elections.” Journal of Political and Military Sociology 23: 99117.
Stimson, James A. 1976. “Public Support for American Presidents: A Cyclical ModeLPublic Opinion Quarterly 40: 121.
Stray, Stephanie, and Silver, Mick. 1983. “Government Popularity, By-Elections and Cycles.” Parliamentary Affairs 36: 4955.
Swaddle, Kevin, and Heath, Anthony. 1989. “Official and Reported Turnout in the British General Election of 1987.” British Journal of Political Science 19: 537–70.
Swanson, Norman R., and White, Halbert. 1995. “A Model Selection Approach to Assessing the Information in the Term Structure Using Linear Models and Artificial Neural Networks.” Journal of Business and Economic Statistics 13: 265–75.
Van der Eijk, Cees. 1987. “Testing Theories of Electoral Cycles: The Case of the Netherlands.” European Journal of Political Research 15: 253–70.
Weaver, David H. 1996. “What Voters Learn from Media.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 546: 3447.
Whitney, D. Charles, and Goldman, Steven B. 1985. “Media Use and Time of Vote Decision: A Study of the 1980 Presidential Election.” Communication Research 12: 511–29.
Zimmer, Troy A. 1981. “Media Exposure to Campaigns: Public Anticipation and Involvement in Elections.” Communication Research 8: 189204.
MathJax
MathJax is a JavaScript display engine for mathematics. For more information see http://www.mathjax.org.

Timing of Vote Decision in First and Second Order Dutch Elections 1978–1995: Evidence from Artificial Neural Networks

  • Rob Eisinga, Philip Hans Franses and Dick van Dijk

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed