Michael Lewis-Beck

Michael Lewis-Beck
University of Iowa | UI · Department of Political Science

About

310
Publications
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13,052
Citations
Citations since 2016
59 Research Items
5626 Citations
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20162017201820192020202120220200400600800
20162017201820192020202120220200400600800

Publications

Publications (310)
Article
Full-text available
Election forecasting is a growing enterprise. Structural models relying on “fundamental” political and economic variables, principally to predict government performance, are popular in political science. Conventional wisdom though is these standard structural models fall short in predicting individual blocs’ performance and their applicability to m...
Article
VEconomic theories assume that individuals are rational actors, and that their behavior can be explained as the result of a cost–benefit calculus. A large number of studies have used economic theories to explain political participation, but expectations are sometimes not met, with inconclusive results. This chapter discusses the usefulness and limi...
Article
“It's the economy stupid”—is the phrase that captures the ubiquity of economics in determining election outcomes. Nevertheless, while several studies support the premise of economic voting, a constant critique of valence economic models is that partisan bias contaminates voters' economic perceptions, thus invaliding any independent effect of econom...
Article
Full-text available
Election forecasts, based on public opinion polls or statistical structural models, regularly appear before national elections in established democracies around the world. However, in less established democratic systems, such as those in Latin America, scientific election forecasting by opinion polls is irregular and by statistical models almost no...
Article
Full-text available
Election forecasts, based on public opinion polls or statistical structural models, regularly appear before national elections in established democracies around the world. However, in less established democratic systems, such as those in Latin America, scientific election forecasting by opinion polls is irregular and by statistical models is almost...
Article
At face, Ireland's economy had staged a remarkable recovery by 2020 since the devastating impact of the Global Financial Crisis. The economy was the fastest growing in Europe, unemployment had reached record lows, and Ireland's debt was back to its lowest level since 2009. The traditional economic voting model assumes voters punish outgoing governm...
Article
Candidate ‘authenticity’ has become a frequent explanation of electoral performance. Yet its study in electoral research has been largely neglected. Building on recent work, we test its relationship with candidate support in the 2020 Iowa Democratic Caucus through a survey of likely Caucus goers. The Caucus offers an ideal setting — a contest focus...
Article
Election forecasting is a cottage industry among pollsters, the media, political scientists, and political anoraks. Here, we plow a fresh field in providing a systematic exploration of election forecasting in Ireland. We develop a structural forecast model for predicting incumbent government support in Irish general elections between 1977 and 2020...
Article
The symposium aims to analyse the politicisation of the European issue following the onset of the Eurozone crisis, in particular its impact on individual attitudes and voting both at the national and supranational level. By way of an introduction, we address the state of the art on the importance of the Eurozone crisis for EU politicisation, as wel...
Article
The process of European integration, through institutions such as the European Union, the Eurozone, or Schengen, implies a shift in political decision-making away from the national governments and towards international institutions. This gradual shift in the balance of power, furthermore, is increasingly debated by citizens. As a result, European i...
Article
Progressive tax rates are one of the main instruments for redistribution within advanced liberal democracies. In this study, we investigate public support for this policy. In our analysis of a novel question included in the Belgian Electoral Study (2019) we show that left-wing citizens are strongly in favour of this system. Importantly, high levels...
Preprint
The Political Economy model represents one of the earliest political science forecasting models for presidential elections. It relies on a multiple regression equation with just a few predictor variables, drawing from leading theories of vote choice, measured several months before the election. Much has been said about the uniqueness of the 2020 el...
Article
Full-text available
In recent US presidential elections, there has been considerable focus on how well public opinion can forecast the outcome, and 2016 proved no exception. Pollsters and poll aggregators regularly offered numbers on the horse-race, usually pointing to a Clinton victory, which failed to occur. We argue that these polling assessments of support were mi...
Article
Full-text available
Past research on the relationship between income inequality and turnout has produced mixed results, with some studies suggesting that income inequality leads to lower turnout while other studies find little or no significant effects. In this article, we investigate the extent to which these mixed results are due to the contingent nature of inequali...
Article
Election forecasting models based on voting theories and estimated via regression analysis are routinely available for virtually all advanced industrial democracies. Denmark, however, offers an exception, for no such prediction equations have been published on the Danish case. This absence has sometimes been attributed to the puzzling nature of eco...
Article
Full-text available
We consider two criteria for evaluating election forecasts: accuracy (precision) and lead (distance from the event), specifically the trade-off between the two in poll-based forecasts. We evaluate how much "lead" still allows prediction of the election outcome. How much further back can we go, supposing we tolerate a little more error? Our analysis...
Article
Full-text available
The surprising election of Donald Trump to the presidency calls for a comprehensive assessment of what motivated voters to opt for a controversial political novice rather than a provocative but experienced political veteran. Our study provides a novel exploration of the Trump victory through the prism of the defeated candidate—Hillary Rodham Clinto...
Article
Full-text available
Are ordinary citizens better at predicting election results than conventional voter intention polls? The authors address this question by comparing eight forecasting models for British general elections: one based on voters' expectations of who will win and seven based on who voters themselves intend to vote for (including ‘uniform national swing m...
Article
Economic growth helps governments get re-elected. But does growth, as a valence issue, exhaust the possibilities for the economic vote? This paper shows, via an examination of 318 elections in established democracies, across time and space, that growth and inequality both matter for incumbent government support. Somewhat surprisingly, it is found t...
Article
Changes in voters' behavior and in the campaign strategies that political parties pursue are likely to have increased the importance of campaigns on voters' electoral choices. As a result, scholars increasingly question the usefulness and predictive power of structural forecasting models, that use information from “fundamental” variables to make an...
Chapter
Full-text available
In democracies, we elect our political leaders by choosing among a rival set of candidates or parties. What makes us pick one over all the others? Do we carefully weigh the plat­ forms of all the candidates and then select the one closest to our personal desires? Or, do we select the candidate our friends and neighbors recommend? Perhaps, even, to...
Article
Voter turnout still receives considerable attention in electoral studies. Recently, there have been numerous investigations of a neglected determinant, sometimes labeled “patrimony” and here labeled “wealth.” This variable, measuring how much wealth a voter has, appears to help account for party choice, beyond more usual socioeconomic measures. How...
Article
Among certain politicians, pundits and people, the expectation was that President Trump would make an economic difference in the 2018 congressional elections. In particular, the belief was that his economic appeal, coupled with his economic policies, would favor Republican candidates. However, an application of the classic referendum model for fore...
Article
Considerable research shows the presence of an economic vote, with governments rewarded or punished by voters, depending on the state of the economy. But how stable is this economic vote? A current argument holds its effect has increased over time, because of weakening long-term social and political forces. Under these conditions, short-term forces...
Article
House Forecasts: Structure-X Models For 2018 - Volume 51 Special Issue - Michael S. Lewis-Beck, Charles P. Tien
Article
We know that candidates and campaigns matter in democratic elections, but that knowledge may not be readily observed in most structural models of national election forecasting. For one, these models virtually never include direct, explicit candidate-related campaign variables as predictors. At most, these candidate/campaign variables are picked up...
Article
The impact of institutions on the economic vote stands as a well-established proposition for the advanced democracies of Europe. We know less, however, regarding the institutional effects on the economic vote in the developing democracies of Latin America. Carrying out an analysis of presidential elections in 18 Latin American countries, we offer e...
Article
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The Grand Coalition Reappointed but Angela Merkel on Borrowed Time - Volume 50 Issue 3 - Bruno Jérôme, Véronique Jérôme-Speziari, Michael S. Lewis-Beck
Article
Full-text available
Serious election forecasting has become a routine activity in most Western democracies, with various methodologies employed, for example, polls, models, prediction markets, and citizen forecasting. In the Netherlands, however, election forecasting has limited itself to the use of polls, mainly because other approaches are viewed as too complicated,...
Article
Full-text available
Perhaps no variable in political science has received more attention than electoral participation. Despite, or because of, the great amount of research on this topic, significant new determinants for electoral participation have not been recently forthcoming. Here we offer a significant new determinant – patrimony. For theoretical reasons, we expec...
Article
Full-text available
A Recap of the 2016 Election Forecasts - Volume 50 Issue 2 - James E. Campbell, Helmut Norpoth, Alan I. Abramowitz, Michael S. Lewis-Beck, Charles Tien, James E. Campbell, Robert S. Erikson, Christopher Wlezien, Brad Lockerbie, Thomas M. Holbrook, Bruno Jerôme, Véronique Jerôme-Speziari, Andreas Graefe, J. Scott Armstrong, Randall J. Jones, Alfred...
Conference Paper
Are ordinary citizens better at predicting election results than conventional voter intention polls? We address this question by comparing predictive models for British elections: one based on voters' expectations of who will win and others based on who voters themselves intend to vote for (including " cube rule " and uniform national swing models)...
Article
Electoral democracies worldwide are all organised around elections but the rules under which the elections are organised differ greatly from one country to another. These electoral rules, such as whether voting is compulsory or what electoral system is used, are thought of as strongly affecting voters’ behaviour and the choices they make. If electo...
Article
Institutions are thought to matter for vote choice, and work on economic voting is exemplary in this regard. The strength of the economic vote varies considerably cross-nationally and this seems to emanate from differences in the clarity of responsibility. Still, this conceptual frame, dominant in the field, appears to have some cracks. First, almo...
Chapter
Full-text available
Economic-based voting blocs are groups of people who share common economic interests based on their position in the economy. For these groups to become “voting blocs,” political parties must distinguish themselves in their economic policy positions, and a party must appeal to the interests of the group. When this happens, scholars study whether the...
Chapter
Full-text available
"Economic judgment" refers to how people evaluate their personal financial wellbeing and the economic situation in their community or nation. These judgments assess how conditions have changed over time and what they expect will happen in the future. Citizens might also compare the situation in their country to how well the economy in other countri...
Article
Full-text available
This introductory essay to the Special Issue presents the articles which from various perspectives – representation, personalisation, partisanship and accountability – analyse the changing relationship between parties and voters in contemporary Italian politics. This collection shows that the Italian party system appears responsive to people’s dema...
Book
The Michigan model, named after the institution where it was first articulated, has been used to explain voting behavior in North American and Western European democracies. In Latin American Elections, experts on Latin America join with experts on electoral studies to evaluate the model’s applicability in this region. Analyzing data from the Americ...
Article
The Political Economy Model: 2016 US Election Forecasts - Volume 49 Issue 4 - Michael S. Lewis-Beck, Charles Tien
Article
Full-text available
In their classic 1960 work, Angus Campbell and his colleagues offer a model to explain political behavior. They posit a funnel of causality, whereby the causal flow moved from remote long-term forces, such as socio-demographics and party identification, to more immediate short-term forces, such as issues and candidates, finally arriving at the vote...
Article
After decennia of research on economic voting, it is now established that the state of the economy affects voting behaviour. Nevertheless, this conclusion is the result of a focus on predominantly national-level economies and national-level elections. In this paper, we show that at a local level as well, mechanisms of accountability linked to the e...
Article
Election forecasting work, in Britain and elsewhere, has been confined mainly to traditional approaches – statistical modeling or poll-watching. We import a new approach, which we call synthetic modeling. These models, developed out of forecasting efforts from the American 2012 presidential election, we are currently testing in a comparative Europe...
Article
Full-text available
RESUMEN En la actualidad existe un amplio conocimiento acerca del voto económico; conocimiento que, en general, proviene de democracias desarrolladas (Norteamérica y Europa Occidental). Existen trabajos relevantes sobre democracias con niveles de ingresos bajos, pero basados en estudios de casos con datos agregados. Trabajos que incorporen diferent...
Article
Durante la última década del siglo XX la teoría clásica del voto eco-nómico ha recibido considerable apoyo empírico. Los votantes premian al partido de gobierno por los buenos tiempos económicos y lo castigan por los malos. Pero el éxito de este paradigma, el cual adopta la visión clásica [valence] de la economía que posee un amplio consenso, ha ec...
Article
This article introduces and reviews a set of twelve academic forecasts of the 2015 British general election. Along with the vast majority of others including journalists and betting markets, they failed by a big margin to predict that the Conservatives would emerge with an overall majority of seats. Several suffered from the 1992 scale inaccuracies...
Article
This handbook is currently in development, with individual articles publishing online in advance of print publication. At this time, we cannot add information about unpublished articles in this handbook, however the table of contents will continue to grow as additional articles pass through the review process and are added to the site. Please note...
Chapter
Full-text available
Voters evaluate economic conditions and use these assessments to hold the incumbent government accountable at election time. Voters typically assign credit or blame for the economic situation to the government leader, the President or Prime Minister, and his or her political party. This assignment of responsibility is easy for voters when the locus...
Article
We compare the recent methodological profile of political science work in France and the United States, applying a standardized content analysis of the research methods to leading political science journals in both countries over time periods of equal length. We find that, compared with the United States, qualitative work clearly dominates quantita...
Article
As an enterprise, election forecasting has spread and grown. Initial work began in the 1980s in the United States, eventually travelling to Western Europe, where it finds a current outlet in the most of the region’s democracies. However, that work has been confined to traditional approaches – statistical modeling or poll-watching. We import a new a...
Article
Full-text available
Election forecasting has become a standard part of the tool kit for political scientists around the world. However, that focus is almost exclusively on forecasting national electoral contests. Here we offer another, unique, focus – the changing political color of the core nations of the European Union, the Fifteen. First, we offer a model that fore...
Article
Trying to explain French elections sometimes seems like trying to see through a blinding snowstorm. But a focus on choice and outcome in presidential contests provides a clear path to their understanding. These elections, paramount in themselves, frame the lesser contests. Here we develop a theory of French presidential elections, using a French-st...
Article
Full-text available
Evaluations of the 2014 Midterm Election Forecasts - Volume 48 Issue 2 - James E. Campbell, Alan I. Abramowitz, Joseph Bafumi, Robert S. Erikson, Christopher Wlezien, Michael S. Lewis-Beck, Charles Tien, Benjamin Highton, Eric McGhee, John Sides
Article
Full-text available
A growing literature highlights the importance of leader image as a determinant of voting in contemporary democracies and as a force now paralleling the explanatory power of traditional structural and ideological factors affecting voting choice. Yet the actual effect of leaders in the citizen’s vote calculus remains uncertain because of the potenti...
Article
Full-text available
Scientific work on national election forecasting has become most developed for the United States case, where three dominant approaches can be identified: Structuralists, Aggregators, and Synthesizers. For European cases, election forecasting models remain almost exclusively Structuralist. Here we join together structural modeling and aggregate poll...
Article
Durante la última década del siglo XX la teoría clásica del voto eco-nómico ha recibido considerable apoyo empírico. Los votantes premian al partido de gobierno por los buenos tiempos económicos y lo castigan por los malos. Pero el éxito de este paradigma, el cual adopta la visión clásica [valence] de la economía que posee un amplio consenso, ha ec...
Article
Full-text available
Durante la última década del siglo XX la teoría clásica del voto económico ha recibido considerable apoyo empírico. Los votantes premian al partido de gobierno por los buenos tiempos económicos y lo castigan por los malos. Pero el éxito de este paradigma, el cual adopta la visión clásica [valence] de la economía que posee un amplio consenso, ha ecl...
Article
An abundance of comparative survey research argues the presence of economic voting as an individual force in European elections, thereby refuting a possible ecological fallacy. But the hypothesis of economic voting at the aggregate level, with macroeconomics influencing overall electoral outcomes, seems less sure. Indeed, there might be a micrologi...
Article
U.S. presidential election forecasting has lately received considerable attention. A leading approach, statistical modeling, has undergone considerable change. We have contributed to that change in two ways, by stressing prediction over explanation and dynamics over statics. For prediction, we offer a proxy model of U.S. presidential election forec...
Chapter
Full-text available
In democratic nations, elections are premier political events. They require citizens to choose their leaders and leaders to be held accountable. The winners of an electoral contest are allowed to wield power, sometimes great power. Therefore, citizens follow campaigns with interest and are often eager to know who will win. In other words, they woul...
Article
Studies of French voting behavior have pioneered the inclusion of patrimony in explanations of vote choice in presidential elections. Patrimony, as measured by the number of assets that an individual owns, has been found to matter to vote choice in recent French presidential elections. Can we say that its influence has continued with the latest 201...
Article
Full-text available
While the economic vote exists in Western democracies, the question of its stability remains a subject of controversy. This article focuses on two possible factors behind the instability observed: the endogeneity problem and the restricted variance problem. The former concerns the influence of partisan thinking on economic perception, while the lat...
Article
We develop a simple structural forecasting model of govenment support in Swedish parliamentary elections, building on unemployment and inflation figures. The model predicts that the incumbent government will receive 49.7 percent of the vote in the september 2014 elections. In contrast, a simple model based on polling done in May predicts that the g...
Article
Full-text available
Nannestad and Paldam (Public Choice 79:213–245, 1994) published herein an extremely influential review of the literature linking economics and elections, what they called the “VP functions.” In that work, they offered a number of conclusions, in proposition form, about the state of the evidence in this field. We present the key ones (16 in all), an...