Ignacio Lago

Ignacio Lago
University Pompeu Fabra | UPF · Department of Political and Social Sciences

PhD

About

103
Publications
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1,186
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October 2017 - present
University Pompeu Fabra
Position
  • Professor

Publications

Publications (103)
Article
While electoral reforms clearly affect how seats are (re)distributed among parties immediately after their adoption, they do not significantly change the (re)distribution of votes among parties. As political knowledge is positively related to turnout, we argue that the effect of majoritarian electoral reforms on the number of parties is contingent...
Article
The conditions under which women's national football teams do better or worse in international tournaments remains an open question. Using data from 116 countries worldwide, we have examined three arguments accounting for the gender gap in international football success, focusing on positive externalities from economic development and women's empow...
Article
With the recent rise of populism in the developed world, the division between large cities and rural areas is in the spotlight as never before. This article explores the effect of the urban–rural divide on satisfaction with democracy in 27 European countries. I argue that individuals living in rural areas are less satisfied with the way democracy w...
Article
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There is perennial debate in comparative politics about electoral institutions, but what characterizes this debate is the lack of consideration for citizens' perspective. In this paper, we report the results of an original survey conducted on representative samples in 15 West European countries (N = 15,414). We implemented an original instrument to...
Article
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This article examines the forces shaping changes in the number of parties between consecutive elections. We argue that the transaction costs in electoral coordination depend on the turnout level in the previous election. The greater the number of peripheral voters entering the electorate, the less likely a substantial change in the distribution of...
Article
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This article examines whether household size affects economic voting. We argue when individuals are asked about national economic conditions and their personal financial situation that moderate or mid-range responses are more likely in multi-person households than in one-person households. The aggregation of personal economic evaluations within hou...
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This paper explores an alternative mechanism for understanding the drivers of the nomination of women for elective office in single-member electoral systems. Previous research has generally examined two sources of gender-based politics: party ideology, with leftist parties being more female-friendly than rightist parties, and the strategic nominati...
Article
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Electoral rules are a crucial institutional factor shaping the entry and success of new parties. However, testing how they affect voting behavior is problematic when using observational data in cross-national studies. As district magnitude is usually correlated with politically salient features affecting the likelihood of voting for new (and small)...
Article
Objectives This article relies on data from 20,730 matches in 30 national soccer leagues in Europe to explore the determinants of penalties taken in elite soccer. Methods We run OLS cross‐sectional regressions using aggregated data. Results We find that the variation in the number of penalties given across European soccer leagues is largely expla...
Article
While there is a great deal of anecdotal evidence on the impact of soccer wins on attitudes toward immigrants and immigration, there is relatively little hard empirical evidence. It is expected that soccer stimulates more positive attitudes towards immigrants when it highlights immigration benefits rather than costs and increases exposure to famous...
Article
This article revisits the foundations of prior research on the effects of plebiscitarian selection mechanisms on candidates' electoral strength. While previous studies do not nest political parties' decision making, the authors argue that party primary effects entail the interdependence of party procedures for candidate selection. The article asses...
Book
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The Oxford Handbook of Spanish Politics provides a comprehensive and comparative overview of the Spanish political system through the lens of political science. It aims to move away from a complacent analysis of Spanish democracy and provide a nuanced view of some of its strengths and challenges. The Handbook introduces Spanish politics to an inte...
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The general question addressed in this special issue of Regional Studies is whether the Great Recession of 2008 affected the political consensus about decentralization and the conventional wisdom about its impact on economic, political and social outcomes. The present introduction emphasizes the two main lines of enquiry that cut across all the pap...
Article
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The current study offers the first systematic analysis of the impact of citizens’ interest in and perceptions of specific elections on gender differences in turnout. Using an Internet panel survey conducted by the Making Electoral Democracy Work project covering the 2013 state, 2013 federal, and 2014 European elections in Bavaria (Germany), our pro...
Article
This paper explores how the uniformity of electoral swings in the district vote within countries is affected by the level of economic and political decentralization. It relies on aggregate data from 3796 districts in 31 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries in two consecutive national elections before and after the...
Article
This paper explores how the uniformity of electoral swings in the district vote within countries is affected by the level of economic and political decentralization. It relies on aggregate data from 3796 districts in 31 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries in two consecutive national elections before and after the...
Article
This paper explores how the uniformity of electoral swings in the district vote within countries is affected by the level of economic and political decentralization. It relies on aggregate data from 3796 districts in 31 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries in two consecutive national elections before and after the...
Article
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Voting early allows people to vote at the time that is most convenient to them. In this study, we examine whether early voting reduces satisfaction with vote choice. Using unique individual-level data from 16 surveys in national and regional elections in 4 countries and more than 15,000 voters, we show that early voters, particularly those who are...
Article
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The aim of this study is to examine the relationship between migrating soccer players and the annual ranking of the national teams according to the World Football Elo Rating. The sample includes annual data for 243 countries over the period 1994–2018. Migration is captured with the number of migrating players by country in the “big-five” leagues. T...
Article
Are Politics Local? The Two Dimensions of Party Nationalization around the World. By Scott Morgenstern. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017. 310p. $99.99 cloth, $31.99 paper. - Volume 16 Issue 4 - Ignacio Lago
Article
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Objectives We show that decentralization of economic and political power makes a substantial difference in football. Decentralization increases the competitive balance of domestic football leagues and creates an advantage for clubs from decentralized countries in international competitions. Methods We run pooled cross‐sectional time‐series analyse...
Article
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A new theoretical development for examining the institutionalization of party systems is proposed in this paper. We build on electoral coordination theories to disaggregate volatility into the vote transfers that occur between or towards parties that are in equilibrium (which we call endogenous volatility) and those that are not (exogenous volatili...
Article
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The Making Electoral Democracy Work project conducted a unique survey prior to the election held on 21 December 2017 in exceptional circumstances in Catalonia. In spite of a series of major events in fall 2017, overall election results were similar to those of the previous regional election, held in 2015. In addition to standard demographic, attitu...
Research
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We argue that decentralization of economic and political power makes a substantial difference in football. We demonstrate, with analyses of 35 European democratic countries over the period 1950-2010, that regional autonomy boosts the competition among clubs from different regions and results in a greater competitive balance of domestic football lea...
Conference Paper
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We explore how the uniformity of electoral swings in the district vote within countries is affected by the level of economic and political decentralization. We rely on district-level data from OECD countries in two consecutive elections before and after the Great Recession to show that as regional governments exert more influence over the central g...
Article
In this research note, I revisit the conventional wisdom about when the psychological effect of electoral systems is observed. I rely on data from the first presidential and legislative elections in 45 third- and fourth-wave presidential and semi-presidential regimes to show that the psychological effect of electoral systems manifests itself in the...
Article
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Social fractionalisation has been omitted in most influential cross-sectional studies on turnout, and when it has been included, evidence is, at best, mixed. This article addresses this gap from two perspectives. First, using aggregated data from 22 countries we show that turnout is inversely related to ethnolinguistic fractionalisation, even after...
Article
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How party strategies vary by electoral system remains largely unexplored in election studies. Using qualitative and quantitative data from Spanish national and European elections, we test how party strategies diverge between districted electoral systems and systems using a single national district. We use the number of visits to districts by the pa...
Article
The literature on the nationalization of electoral politics focuses on the institutional characteristics of political regimes and the structure and organization of social cleavages. We argue that the nationalization of electoral politics is also driven by economic performance. Economic perturbations increase vote transfers from large (and highly na...
Research
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In this paper we challenge the conventional wisdom about the political consequences of electoral systems. We show that the psychological effects of an electoral system manifest themselves in founding elections in those countries in which there are coattail effects running from the more important to the less important offices. The artificial deflati...
Article
Using data from the Electoral Integrity Project, we measure the level of gerrymandering according to country expert surveys in Lower House elections in 54 democracies from the second half of 2012 until the first half of 2015. We show that majoritarian systems are more prone to gerrymandering than mixed-member and above all in Proportional Represent...
Article
In this paper we explore to what extent political regimes affect the competitive balance of football (soccer) domestic leagues. Relying on data from about 50 European countries and more than 2,000 domestic leagues, we show that the percentage of leagues won by the most successful club in the country is substantially lower in traditional democracies...
Article
We examine the impact of the current economic crisis on the accuracy of responsibility attribution between levels of government within states. Using individual-level data from Spain, we show that learning about responsibility attribution depends on the saliency of the issue (in our study, unemployment) and economic self-interest. The (unintended) p...
Article
The conditions under which losers are willing to challenge the results of elections remain an open question. Using data from the Electoral Integrity Project for 66 democratic and non-democratic countries in 2012 and 2013, we measure how parties or candidates react once votes have been cast and one of them is declared the winner. Do they accept or c...
Article
This article examines the determinants of regional identifications in decentralized Spain. The main argument is that regional identifications change as a result of subnational parties' mobilization strategies, and these depend in turn on the political competition context that they face. We rely on individual data from the Centro de Investigaciones...
Article
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This article examines the political consequences of pre–Election Day poll restrictions. Our argument is that laws forbidding the publication of polling results hamper voters’ electoral coordination when the information environment is more complex. We rely on aggregated data from elections in 46 democracies to show that the number of wasted votes in...
Article
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District magnitude is a central aspect of the institutional context in PR elections, and it influences parties’ and voters’ strategies. The incentives for strategic behaviour are stronger in smaller districts, as only large parties are likely to be viable. This article investigates how much the vote is affected by this characteristic of the elector...
Article
Objectives This article examines whether voters look to the past or the future when forming their perceptions of the parties' chances of winning. Methods We use OLS regression models to analyze panel survey data from the districts where the incumbent was defeated in the 2011 provincial election in Ontario (Canada). ResultsWe find that voters' expec...
Article
This article examines how the partisan turnout bias (i.e. turnout rate differences across districts that are linked to the partisan vote shares in those districts) changes over time in PR districted electoral systems. We argue that the bias after the founding election is the unintended consequence of parties and voters’ strategic behaviors when the...
Article
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In this paper, we propose a new measure of party system nationalization based on a minimalist definition of the phenomenon. A perfectly nationalized party system is a party system with only national parties or, in other words, without sub-national parties. Instead of the homogeneity of parties’ vote shares or the number of parties throughout the co...
Article
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Why does the leftist party vote increase when turnout increases in some countries and not in others? Why does this happen in some instances in time but not in others? Thus far there exists no academic consensus on the relationship between turnout and electoral results. This paper argues that in order to adequately address these questions we need to...
Article
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Resumen: En este artículo se estudian los determinantes institucionales e individuales de la atribución correcta de responsabilidades políticas en el Estado de las Autonomías en España, así como el proceso de aprendizaje de los individuos a lo largo del tiempo. Nuestros resultados muestran que la atribución de las competencias es más acertada cuand...
Article
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. The search for political support leads ultimately to upward deviations from forecasted public deficits when i) budget procedures are soft, ii) breaking promises made on higher expenditures and the lowering of taxes is costly in political terms, and iii) ex-post control by voters and political opposition is imperfect. This hypothesis is tested usi...
Article
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Este artículo estudia la validez de la incumbency-oriented hypothesis en las Comunidades Autónomas españolas. Los resultados de nuestro análisis sugieren que los factores políticos resultan más relevantes que la evolución de las variables económicas y presupuestarias en la explicación y predicción del apoyo electoral de los partidos en el gobierno....
Article
Electoral democracy rests on a straightforward idea: citizens elect their fellow citizens to represent their interests. However, the explanation of voting behaviour is more complex than a probabilistic association between X and Y. A proper understanding demands a close examination of the three links of the causal chain of electoral behavior: partie...
Article
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Relying on data from a natural experiment in Spain, I produce an unbiased estimate of the extent to which strategic voting occurs in multi-member districts. I show that voters have fully adapted to the different incentives provided by distinctive electoral systems in Spain since the first election and also that they behave strategically only when t...
Article
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La polvareda del Methodenstreit todavía sigue sin haberse asentado, además aún no existe un consenso sobre qué metodología es la más apropiada para investigar la sociedad y la política. Este artículo surge de un debate sobre metodología de investigación sociopolítica normativa y empírica, entre Ignacio Lago, Donatella della Porta y Rainer Bauböck,...
Article
This paper argues that wasted votes in founding elections decrease when countries have a previous democratic experience before the current democratic period. This historical-institutionalist argument is tested with national election results in 22 founding elections in third-wave European, Asian, Latin American and African democracies. The results d...
Chapter
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Aún no sé a quiénes vamos a aplastar, ni siquiera quiénes seremos los aplastadores y quiénes los aplastados Manuel Azaña, 1933 2 Todavía no sé quiénes, pero ganaremos Pío Cabanillas, 1977 3 En este capítulo queremos comparar los sistemas electorales de la Segunda República y de la Monarquía parlamentaria. Se trata de los dos únicos sistemas elector...
Article
Why does the leftist party vote increase when turnout increases in some countries and not in others? Why does this happen in some instances in time but not in others? Thus far there exists no academic consensus on the relationship between turnout and electoral results. This paper argues that in order to adequately address these questions we need to...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives. This study examines the impact of competitiveness, winning, and ideological congruence on evaluations of democratic principles, institutions, and performance. We posit that winning matters most. Individuals will hold favorable views toward democracy when it produces the outcomes they desire, independent of other contextual factors assoc...
Article
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The papers published in this special issue were presented at the "International Conference on the Political and Economic Consequences of Decentralization" at Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain, 5-6 November 2009. The conference was organized by REDE and the University of Vigo, and was sponsored by the Galician regional government (Ministry of P...
Article
Based on a sample of 227 elections in seventeen Western European countries over the period of 1945-1998, this paper examines to what extent party systems are shaped by fiscal and political decentralization. With the exception of a few special cases, empirical evidence does not support the existence of a robust relationship between the degree of dec...
Article
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IntroduccIón 1 El saber convencional sobre el funciona-miento de las democracias representativas establece que los votantes tienen en cuenta la situación económica (incluyendo la fiscal y presupuestaria) a la hora de evaluar la labor 1 Este artículo, cuyo origen se encuentra en la Ayuda a la Investigación concedida por el Centro de Investi-gaciones...
Article
The variables explaining party system fragmentation have been investigated extensively, but little is known about changes in the number of parties over time within countries. This article is an attempt to fill the gap by explaining the entry of new viable competitors in party systems after the founding election. Using empirical evidence from Spain,...
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This paper analyzes the simplification of the party system in the nationalist space in Galicia through a model of electoral coordination based on the interaction between three elements: electoral system, political preferences and electoral expectations. Using in-depth elite interview data, in this paper the causal mechanisms behind the simplificati...
Article
Applying a multilevel model, we argue that tax morale is a function of individual-and contextual-level variables. Evidence presented in this article, based on the 2004–2005 European Social Survey and information on institutional settings, shows that tax morale in European countries varies systematically with socio-demographic characteristics, perso...
Article
This paper critically reviews the conventional wisdom on the positive relationship between turnout and the electoral results of the PSOE in general elections in Spain. We highlight the existence of three causal mechanisms that give rise to different predictions about this correlation and therefore undermine the existing parsimonious thesis. Some of...
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On the basis of aggregated and individual-level survey data of national and regional elections in Spain, this paper analyzes how economic voting is impacted by vertical and horizontal dimensions of clarity of responsibility. Our findings suggest that economic voting is enhanced when mechanisms of accountability are simple.
Article
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In this paper, a new measure of party system nationalisation is proposed. Instead of analyzing the homogeneity of parties' vote shares across districts within countries, we measure the phenomenon in terms of a combination of the homogeneity of the supply of parties across districts, their electoral results, and the number of seats to be filled in t...
Article
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En este artículo se examina críticamente el saber convencional sobre la relación positiva entre la participación electoral y los resultados electorales del PSOE en las elecciones generales en España. Subrayamos la existencia de tres mecanismos causales en juego, que dan lugar a predicciones distintas sobre esta correlación y que impiden, por lo tan...
Article
The abstract for this document is available on CSA Illumina.To view the Abstract, click the Abstract button above the document title.
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This article shows the existence of a coordination dilemma in multilevel countries that hold elections for different parliaments, at different territorial levels and with different electoral rules. With evidence from Spain, the analysis identifies interaction or contamination effects between national and subnational electoral arenas that generate,...
Article
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We propose a new general measure of district competitiveness that can be applied to both PR and SMP systems. We define competitiveness as the degree of uncertainty in the outcome of an election, and so the measure of competitiveness is the minimal number of additional votes required for any party to win one additional seat. We show that this corres...
Article
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Los estudios sobre las consecuencias de los sistemas electorales establecen que el número de partidos que compiten en una circunscripción se reduce (incrementa) cuando la magnitud de distrito disminuye (aumen-ta). Este argumento gira sobre el supuesto de que los partidos ajustan sus estrategias al número de escaños en juego como si cada distrito fu...
Article
Applying a multilevel econometric model, we argue that tax morale is a function of individual and contextual-level variables. Evidence presented in this article, based on the 2004-2005 European Social Survey and information on institutional settings, shows that tax morale in European countries varies systematically with socio-demographic characteri...
Article
This paper analyses the results of the 2008 general election in Spain. Using individual and aggregate data, we show that in 2008 voters' behaviour does not differ much from the previous national election in 2004. This indicates a certain level of continuity since 1993, with the exception of 2000 when the conservative Partido Popular gained an absol...
Article
This paper shows the existence of a coordination dilemma in multi-level countries that hold elections for different parliaments, at different territorial levels, and with different electoral rules. With evidence from Spain, our analysis identifies interaction or contamination effects between national and sub-national electoral arenas that generate,...
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The process of formation of electoral expectations in proportional representation systems is analysed in this article. Contrary to Duvergerian or electoral coordination theories, by using survey and in-depth elite interview data from Spain in the 1970s and 1980s, it is shown that strategic voting depends on heuristics (i.e. extrapolations from the...
Article
In this paper we study a coordination dilemma that appears in democracies where the Upper and Lower Houses are elected simultaneously using significantly different rules. How do party systems form when some parties are only viable in some districts of one of the chambers? Are party systems independent from one another, as Duvergerian theories expec...
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This paper analyses the results of the 2006 autonomous election in Catalonia and their implications for Spanish politics. In accordance with the analytical framework provided by Hirschman (Exit, Voice, and Loyalty, Harvard University Press, 1970), and using individual and aggregated data, we show that demands shared by a significant number of voter...
Article
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In this paper, the results of the 2005 autonomous election in Galicia are analyzed. After a review of the political context and the campaign, we present and analyze the results at electoral and institutional level explain the main reasons behind the defeat of the Popular Party after 16 years of absolute majority in the Galician Parliament and discu...
Article
Do political institutions shape the structure of public spending? Based on a sample of 141 elections in eighteen Western European countries over the period 1970-1998, this paper shows that governments’ margin of maneuverability to design and implement fiscal policies depends on the level of party linkage or the nationalization of party systems, def...