Mikko Mattila

Mikko Mattila
University of Helsinki | HY · Faculty of Social Sciences

Professor of Political Science

About

71
Publications
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Introduction
Mikko Mattila is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Helsinki. He is interested in various forms of political participation as well as political institutions in national and comparative settings. He has also analysed European Union politics, especially Council voting. Recently, he has been involved in two major projects 1) Health and political engagement and 2) IntraComp: Intra-party competition.
Additional affiliations
January 2008 - present
University of Helsinki
Position
  • Professor

Publications

Publications (71)
Article
We explore two theoretical possibilities for why personal health may affect political trust: the psychological-democratic contract theory and the role of personal experience in opinion formation. We argue that citizens with health impairments are more likely to experience the direct effects of political decisions, as they are more dependent on publ...
Article
Recently, awareness of the importance of health in explaining political participation has grown considerably. Studies have focused on individual participation forms but not on broader participation modes. Furthermore, analyses of the mechanisms explaining the health effects have been lacking. Here, structural equation models are employed to study t...
Article
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Depression is one of the most common health problems in the developed world. Previous research has primarily investigated the relationship between depression and voting, largely overlooking its cognitive foundations. We turn to political efficacy as a key political attitude and precondition for political engagement. We build on research into the co...
Article
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Why do parties change candidate lists between elections? Although candidate list volatility is an important indicator of the responsiveness of electoral representation, it has received little attention in research. We offer a critical case study of party list volatility in Finland, using a candidate-centred open-list proportional (PR) electoral sys...
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Habit is among the most influential explanations for why people vote. Scholars have addressed the impact of individual disruptions to habitual voting, but analyses including several life events are rare. We combine two panel surveys, conducted in the UK during 1991-2017, to examine the impact of unemployment, retirement, changes in partnership stat...
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This review presents a short overview of the current state of research in the field of health, disability, and political engagement. I focus on the individual-level relationship between health and political behaviour or political attitudes. Most of the existing studies have analysed the effects of health or disability on electoral turnout, and almo...
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Vote choice in an open-list proportional representation (OLPR) electoral system can be considered a complex process. In systems where votes are cast for individual candidates the choice is complicated by the large number of candidates, the two layers of competition involving both individual candidates and parties, and the amount of information requ...
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Candidate endorsements affect the likelihood that people vote for a candidate since they reduce the efforts devoted to vote choices. However, the effects of endorsements from different sources remain under-explored. Furthermore, the effects of endorsements are believed to vary with the level of political sophistication, as voters with low sophistic...
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It is often claimed that computational methods for examining textual data give good enough party position estimates at a fraction of the costs of many non-computational methods. However, the conclusive testing of these claims is still far from fully accomplished. We compare the performance of two computational methods, Wordscores and Wordfish, and...
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Political candidates' ideological positions have been used to explain success in inter-party competition, but little is known about how they impact success in intra-party competition. Here, candidates' positions on the Left–Right and GAL–TAN dimensions are analysed in three Finnish parliamentary elections (2011, 2015, 2019). Candidates' ideological...
Chapter
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Tässä luvussa tarkastelemme ehdokkaiden kampanjointia: minkälaisista kampanjamuodoista ja painotuksista kampanjat rakentuivat sekä miten ehdokkaat ne rahoittivat.
Chapter
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Tässä luvussa tarkastelimme suomalaisen politiikan henkilöitymiskehitystä sekä pidemmällä aikavälillä että erityisesti kevään 2019 eduskuntavaalien yhteydessä. Analysoimme kehitystä sekä puoluejohtajien että laajemmin kaikkien eduskuntavaaliehdokkaiden osalta. Vastaavaa erottelua on käytetty kansainvälisessä politiikan henkilöitymistutkimuksessa, j...
Preprint
We study the effect of endorsements from three different sources – family and close friends, networks on social media and Voting Advice Applications (VAAs) – on candidate favorability. Such shortcuts reduce the efforts devoted to vote choices, but their effects are believed to vary with the level of political sophistication, as voters with low soph...
Article
Turnout and party choice are widely held to be habitual, but little attention has been paid to factors that disrupt the pattern. Good health is an important determinant of political behaviour and a key component in the quality of life. Based on the developmental theory of turnout, we hypothesize that declining health lowers voting propensity over t...
Article
Interest in politics is a key indicator of citizens’ attitudes towards politics. Scholars disagree whether interest is a stable trait developed during adolescence, or if it changes over the life course. We hypothesise that deteriorating health can destabilise the stable sense of political interest because worsening health makes individuals more dep...
Article
Recent research has shown the effect of health on voter turnout, arguing that attenuated health depresses voting. However, we know little about how health is connected to the psychological factors, such as party identification, that precede actual political participation. Employing data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), we show that when...
Article
Surveys generally overestimate the overall level of voter turnout in elections due to both the misreporting of voting and nonresponse. It is sometimes argued that socioeconomic differences in turnout are exaggerated in surveys because social desirability has a more pronounced effect on eligible voters in more advantaged socioeconomic positions. How...
Article
Previous studies show that people with poor health have a lower propensity to vote. With individual-level register data on sickness allowance episodes and voting in three Finnish elections, we address the following questions: (1) What degree of sickness allowance days negatively influences turnout? (2) Are sickness absences on election day more har...
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Katsauksessa kootaan yhteen terveyden vaikutuksesta poliittiseen kiinnittyneisyyteen tehtyjä tutkimustuloksia. Nämä ovat jaoteltu neljään osa-alueeseen: 1) terveyden yhteys poliittisen osallistumisen eri muotoihin, 2) terveyden yhteys arvoihin, asenteisiin, preferensseihin ja luottamukseen, 3) arvot ja asenteet välittäjinä terveyden vaikutuksessa p...
Book
Full-text available
Social scientists have only recently begun to explore the link between health and political engagement. Understanding this relationship is vitally important from both a scholarly and a policy-making perspective. This book is the first to offer a comprehensive account of health and political engagement. Using both individual-level and country-level...
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Disability affects the lives of hundreds of millions across the world. People with disabilities often experience discrimination and unequal treatment. Sometimes the mere categorization of people into groups, i.e., ‘healthy’ vs. ‘disabled’, is enough to trigger discriminatory behaviour against people with disabilities. Previous studies show that in...
Article
Several studies suggest that people suffering from ill health or disabilities have a lower propensity to vote. Using six rounds of the European Social Survey, we examine whether the effect of health or functional disabilities on electoral participation is less or more pronounced in countries which utilize a wider range of facilitation instruments,...
Article
Occupation-based social class is an important, yet under-explored, factor in electoral participation. In this article, social class differences in voter turnout over time are measured, and how two other resources – namely income and health – mediate or modify this relationship is analysed. The analysis is based on an individual-level register-based...
Article
Background: While poor self-rated health is known to decrease an individual's propensity to vote, disaggregation of the components of health on turnout has thus far received only little attention. This study deepens on the understanding of such relationships by examining the association between chronic diseases and voting. Methods: The study use...
Chapter
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Ison-Britannian kansanäänestys Euroopan unionin jäsenyydestä vuonna 2016 herätti kysymyksen maan kansalaisten ja poliittisen johdon sitoutumisesta integraatioon. Yli 40 vuoden jäsenyydestä huolimatta äänestäneiden enemmistö ja vaikutusvaltainen vähem-mistö maan kansanedustajista halusi maansa irtautuvan unionin kahleista. Brexit-äänestyksen tulokse...
Data
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Diasarja perustuu Helsingin yliopiston valtio-opin laitoksella 1990 -luvulla pidettyyn luentosarjaan verkostoanalyysin menetelmistä. Luentosarjaa pitivät Petri Uusikylä, Mikko Mattila, Jan-Erik Johanson sekä Ville Siivonen eri aikoina ja eri kokoonpanoissa.
Article
Many examinations of the dimensions of conflict in the EU Council of Ministers focus on the ideological roots of contestation in the European Union. In this article, we examine for the voting records of the Council in general and five of its subunits (Agriculture, Fisheries, Financial Affairs, Environment, Economic Affairs) the extent to which stru...
Article
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This study analyses the effect of individuals’ self-assessed health on their likelihood of turning out in parliamentary elections in Finland and in Europe. An examination of previous studies in the field of politics and health shows that the field is still very patchy, diffuse and undertheorized. Because of the wide variation in research designs, d...
Article
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Whether parties are representative of their voters over the EU is a key concern in modern European governance. Using European Election Studies data, this article compares opinion congruence between parties and their electorates on the EU dimension in 2004 and 2009 and examines, at the levels of both member states and individual parties, which facto...
Article
This article explores voting patterns in the Council of the European Union between May 2004 and the end of December 2006, studying the full set of voting records for this institution. It analyses government vote choices in the Council on the basis of ordered logistic regression analysis, explaining the propensity of European Union (EU) Member State...
Article
Scholars in the field of electoral participation have for long been aware that turnout is strongly connected to sociopsychological variables such as religiosity, party identification, political interest and sense of political efficacy. The impact of personality characteristics has remained largely unexplored until recently. Based on the Jyväskylä L...
Article
Using survey data on Finnish local politicians (n = 364) we examine the extent to which political orientation affects attitudes towards and perceptions of competitive tendering in social and health service provision. Expectation of cost benefits turns out to be the most important factor accounting for willingness to increase the usage of competitiv...
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Voting and coalitions in the Council of Ministers in the enlarged European Union are analysed for the period during which the EU had 25 Member States, based on Council's roll call records. In terms of frequency of voting in the Council, the new EU Member States did not differ from their older counterparts in any significant way. However, enlargemen...
Article
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In this article support for direct democracy and for stealth democracy in Finland is analysed. Stealth democracy represents a step towards a democracy in which there would be even less citizen involvement than in the representative form of today's democracy. The authors found that both options gained significant support among the Finnish electorate...
Article
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According to the literature on European Parliament (EP) elections, parties do not offer real choices to voters on European integration. Indeed, in most European Union (EU) countries, there has been broad consensus about integration between the main parties. Importantly, previous research shows that this elite convergence is not replicated among the...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract This paper explores voting patterns in the Council of the European Union (EU) between May 2004 and the end of December 2006, studying the full set of voting records for this institution. It analyzes government,vote choices in the Council on the basis of ordered logistic regression analysis, explaining the propensity of EU member states to...
Chapter
Prior to the accession of ten new member states into the European Union in 2004 and of two additional members in 2007, some researchers were concerned that the enlarged Union, and particularly its major legislative organ the Council of Ministers, would be threatened by a gridlock. The rules for decision-making in the enlarged Union were decided in...
Article
This paper analyzes the consequences of the 1992 change in the voting rule in the Finnish Parliament. Before this reform, one third of all Parliament members could delay a law proposal for reconsideration by the Parliament. This rule was abolished in 1992 which meant that the Finnish Parliament finally adopted a simple majority rule to decide on ne...
Article
Full-text available
This article analyses party-voter congruence on European integration matters in the EU member states. Drawing on existing research, we put forward eight hypotheses which are tested with data from the EES2004 survey. We show that parties are closer to their voters on the left/right dimension than on the EU dimension. Parties are also more supportive...
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In this article redistribution in the EU and fiscal transfers between member states are analysed. Which countries are beneficiaries, which are contributors, and what factors affect countries' net fiscal balances? Fiscal transfers among EU member states are partially explained by differences in the countries' economic prosperity, as well as by insti...
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Euroopan parlamentin vaalit 2004 MIKKO MATTILA JA TAPIO RAUNIO Elections to the European Parliament are normally described as second-order elections. In such elections turnout is lower than in national parliamentary elections, and government parties tend to lose votes while opposition parties and particularly small parties on the other hand gain vo...
Article
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This article analyses voting records of the European Union's (EU) Council of Ministers. Governments’ voting patterns are assumed to be partly affected by national-level factors and partly by EU-level factors. The results support the view that the political space of the EU is defined by two dimensions: the traditional left-right dimension, and the i...
Article
In this article fiscal redistribution in the current EU of 15 member states and the future enlarged EU is analyzed. Specifically, net fiscal transfers between EU Member States are analyzed, i.e. which countries are net beneficiaries, which are net contributors and what factors affect countries' net fiscal balances. The results show that, at present...
Article
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  Government formation is guided by several principles such as majority, plurality and electoral gain. According to the principle of electoral gain, parties that increase their share of seats in the elections should form the government, with parties that lose seats joining the opposition. We analyse conformity with this principle in 15 West Europea...
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This article analyses turnout in the European Parliamentary elections. Turnout is affected partly by the same factors that affect turnout in normal national elections and partly by factors related to the EU. The results show that most of the cross-country variation in turnout can be explained by the same variables as in national elections. Compulso...
Article
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Government formation is guided by several principles, such as majority, plurality and electoral principles. According to the electoral principle, parties that increase their share of seats in the elections should form the government, parties that lose seats joining the opposition. We analyse the fulfilment of this principle in the five Nordic count...
Article
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Vaalimenestys ja hallituksen muodostaminen Länsi-Euroopassa 1945-1999 MIKKO MATTILA TAPIO RAUNIO Government formation is guided by principles such as majority, plurality and electoral gain. According to the principle of electoral gain parties that increase their share of seats in elections should form the government, with parties that lose seats jo...
Article
During the past two decades growing public sectors and simultaneous slow economic growth have highlighted the role of deficit management as a central part of economic policies in modern democracies. Both economists and political scientists have emphasized the role of political institutions in public financial policies. This study contributes to thi...
Article
This article examines whether data on the voting patterns in the Council of Ministers lend support to the hypotheses that can be derived from some recent rational choice models of decision-making in the European Union. The findings show major discrepancies between the predictions of these spatial models and the empirical observations. Unanimous dec...
Article
This paper discusses voting in the EU Council of Ministers, how it has been modelled in the political science literature and how empirical observations give credibility to these models. There is certain inconsistency between the existing models of decision making and empirical observations of the behaviour of the Council. The unanimous decision mak...
Book
Full-text available
The overall aim of this study was to analyse the structure of decision making in the domain of Finnish social and health care services legislation from the policy network perspective. This perspective connects both public and private organisational actors into the policy-making process. These actors have varying interests and policy preferences whi...
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This article analyses cutbacks in Finnish social and health care programmes. Eight hypotheses were formulated and then tested with empirical cutback data from 1991–95. The analysis showed that strictly administrative programmes and those focused on marginal groups were more likely to be cut more than other programs. These results partially endorse...
Article
Full-text available
This paper analyzes the consequences of the 1992 change in the voting rule in the Finnish Parliament. Before this reform, one third of all Parliament members could delay a law proposal for reconsideration by the Parliament. This rule was abolished in 1992 which meant that the Finnish Parliament finally adopted a simple majority rule to decide on ne...
Article
The study of government popularity functions has been popular among political scientists since the pioneering work of the early 1970s. Most of the studies have concentrated on data from the United States or from Great Britain. The reason for this has probably been the availability of data over long periods of time in these countries, and the fact t...
Book
Full-text available
Tämän kirjan tarkoituksena on perehdyttää lukija sosiaalisten verkostojen maailmaan ja antaa jokaiselle aiheesta kiinnostuneelle riittävät tekniset valmiudet verkostoanalyysin hyödyntämiseen omassa tutkimustyössään. Kirja pyrkii yksinkertaisten käytännön esimerkkien avulla helpottamaan verkostomenetelmien oppimista ja auttamaan lukijaa sivuuttamaan...
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In most western countries, public services have been the target of cur-backs during the past few years. It is often argued that support for a strong welfare slate has declined. In this article, attitudes towards public services in Finland are examined. Factors affecting the willingness to accept cuts were studied using a structural equation model a...
Article
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In this article the network of interest representation of Finnish labour organizations in the social and health policy domain was analysed More precisely the research question was whether the interest representation follows the hierarchical or the competitive model of interest channelling The first model shared many features of the corporatist theo...
Article
Full-text available
Kunnallinen palvelutuotanto on viime aikoina noussut vilkkaan keskusteIun kohteeksi. Tähän on ollut syynä huonontunut taloudellinen tilanne, joka näkyy myös kuntasektorilla toisaalta pienentyneinä verotuottoina toisaalta suurempina menoina. Kuntasektorilla onkin arvioitu olleen yli l0 miljardin markan budjettivaje vuonna 1992. Talousongelmat ovat h...

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Projects (5)
Project
Tarkoituksena on koota yhteen suomenkielistä aineistoa sosiaalisten verkostojen tutkimuksesta ja erityisesti sosiaalisen verkostoanalyysin sovelluksista
Project
The overall objective of this project is to unravel people's preferences for political processes. Research questions include what kind of process people in general prefer, the extent to which there are systematic variations among the public concerning these processes and how process preferences impact other types of political behaviors. The project has been funded by the Academy of Finland.
Project
The main objective of this project is to unravel the mechanisms of intraparty competition and the determinants of individual electoral success in the Finnish open-list PR. The project builds on an extensive database on nominated candidates collected within the framework of a comparative project on intraparty competition lead by Matthew S. Shugart, UC Davis. Further it builds on data from the Finnish parliamentary candidates survey (FCS) collected within the framework of the Comparative Candidates Survey (www.comparativecandidates.org) For more information: https://www2.helsinki.fi/en/researchgroups/intraparty-competition