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Can we feel their presence? a new framework for investigating minor parties in English Local Government

Sloan, Luke ORCID: 2013. Can we feel their presence? a new framework for investigating minor parties in English Local Government. Local Government Studies 40 (4) , pp. 621-641. 10.1080/03003930.2013.795891

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Minor parties in English local government have largely been neglected by the research literature because of their lack of electoral success at the aggregate level. However, over the past decade minor party candidates have contested an increasing number of wards and this rise is disproportionate to their share of the vote. Developing the concept of ‘presence’ and a focus on wards rather than seats we use newly reworked data from the Elections Centre Database (University of Plymouth) to plot the proportion of wards contested by minor party candidates from 1973–2008. We argue that whilst changes in vote share are minimal throughout the period, the magnitude of the recent increase in minor party activity at the ward level is unprecedented and justifies further study. We also explore the variation in minor party activity between authority types, concluding that the explanation for the recent rise in contestation is not constant across similar authorities and electoral systems. We suggest that the explanation for minor party activity is much more complex and relative.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JS Local government Municipal government
Uncontrolled Keywords: Minor parties, local government, elections, presence, contestation.
Additional Information: Published online before print 8 July 2013.
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0300-3930
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2022 10:33

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