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Hug and Sciarini: Referendums on European integration

Disclaimer. Don't rely on these old notes in lieu of reading the literature, but they can jog your memory. As a grad student long ago, my peers and I collaborated to write and exchange summaries of political science research. I posted them to a wiki-style website. "Wikisum" is now dead but archived here. I cannot vouch for these notes' accuracy, nor can I say who wrote them.

Hug and Sciarini. 2000. Referendums on European integration: Do institutions matter in the voter's decision?. Comparative Political Studies 33:3-36.

Question: What is the effect of referendum institutions on voter behavior?

Hypothesis 1: Government supporters vote more strongly in favor of a government proposal if the referendum is nonrequired than if it is required.

Hypothesis 2: Government supporters vote more strongly in favor of a government proposal if the referendum is binding than if it is nonbinding.

Hypothesis 3: The effect of the binding/nonbinding distinction on the role of partisanship is stronger than the effect of the require/nonrequired distinction.

Assumptions: The gov't is supporting the referendum proposal, and is not suffering from serious internal decisions. Also, only looking at government supporters. (Mostly because dealing with the opposition is too difficult to code/gather data).

The 14 Votes: 4 in Denmark, 3 in Ireland, 2 in Norway, 1 in Great Britain, 1 in France, 1 in Switzerland, 1 in Austria, 1 in Finland, 1 in Sweden. The votes were taken in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. The were voting on the EC membership, voting on the Single European Act, first and second votes on the Maastricht treaty, voting on EU membership, voting on the EEA treaty.

Data on Voting: from surveys, to find out if voted for or against their (gov't) party; and for or against referendum.

Methods: Percentages of voters for or against (for broad claims). Regression analysis.

Results that support actually studying this:

Results for their hypotheses (formal definitions):

Results for their hypotheses (political definitions�sometimes unavoidable when not required):


Possible Problems:

Research on similar subjects


Hug, Simon (author)Sciarini, Pascal (author)American PoliticsDirect Democracy

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