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Conditions Favouring Parties of the Extreme Right in Western Europe


  • Jackman, Robert W.
  • Volpert, Karin


We examine the systemic conditions that have influenced the electoral success of parties of the extreme right in West European politics from 1970 through 1990. Empirical estimates based on 103 elections in sixteen countries suggest that electoral and party-system factors interact with each other to generate conditions conducive to these parties. Specifically, increasing electoral thresholds dampen support for the extreme right as the number of parliamentary parties expands. At the same time, multi-partism increasingly fosters parties of the extreme right with rising electoral proportionality. Our analyses also indicate that higher rates of unemployment provide a favourable environment for these political movements. These results suggest that levels of electoral support for the extreme right are sensitive to factors that can be modified through policy instruments.

Suggested Citation

  • Jackman, Robert W. & Volpert, Karin, 1996. "Conditions Favouring Parties of the Extreme Right in Western Europe," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(4), pages 501-521, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:bjposi:v:26:y:1996:i:04:p:501-521_00

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    6. Brian Burgoon & Sam van Noort & Matthijs Rooduijn & Geoffrey Underhill, 2018. "Radical Right Populism and the Role of Positional Deprivation and Inequality," LIS Working papers 733, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    7. Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya & Kelly, Grace, 2017. "Welfare Chauvinism? Refugee Flows and Electoral Support for Populist-right Parties in Industrial Democracies," MPRA Paper 81816, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Olga Orlanski & Günther G. Schulze, 2018. "The Determinants of Islamophobia – An Empirical Analysis of the Swiss Minaret Referendum," Discussion Paper Series 35, Department of International Economic Policy, University of Freiburg, revised Jan 2018.
    9. Andreas Steinmayr, 2016. "Exposure to Refugees and Voting for the Far-Right. (Unexpected) Results from Austria," WIFO Working Papers 514, WIFO.
    10. Arzheimer, Kai & Evans, Jocelyn, 2010. "Bread and butter à la française: Multiparty forecasts of the French legislative vote (1981-2007)," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 19-31, January.
    11. Olle Folke, 2014. "Shades Of Brown And Green: Party Effects In Proportional Election Systems," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(5), pages 1361-1395, October.
    12. David Jesuit & Piotr Paradowski & Vincent Mahler, 2008. "The Conditional Effects of Income Inequality on Extreme Right Wing Votes: A Subnational Analysis of Western Europe in the 1990’s," LIS Working papers 486, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    13. Martin Steininger & Ralph Rotte, 2009. "Crime, unemployment, and xenophobia?," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 29(1), pages 29-63, February.
    14. Evans, Jocelyn & Ivaldi, Gilles, 2010. "Comparing forecast models of Radical Right voting in four European countries (1973-2008)," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 82-97, January.
    15. Quentin David & Jean‐Benoit Pilet & Gilles Van Hamme, 2018. "Scale Matters in Contextual Analysis of Extreme Right Voting and Political Attitudes," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(4), pages 509-536, November.
    16. Vincent Mahler & David Jesuit, 2004. "Electoral Support for Extreme Right-Wing Parties: A Subnational Analysis of Western European Elections in the 1990s," LIS Working papers 391, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    17. Proaño Acosta, Christian & Peña, Juan Carlos & Saalfeld, Thomas, 2019. "Inequality, macroeconomic performance and political polarization: An empirical analysis," BERG Working Paper Series 149, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    18. Laura Barros & Manuel Santos Silva, 2019. "#EleNão: Economic crisis, the political gender gap, and the election of Bolsonaro," Ibero America Institute for Econ. Research (IAI) Discussion Papers 242, Ibero-America Institute for Economic Research.
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    20. Olga Orlanski & Günther G. Schulze, 2017. "The Determinants of Islamophobia - An Empirical Analysis of the Swiss Minaret Referendum," CESifo Working Paper Series 6741, CESifo Group Munich.
    21. Clément Malgouyres, 2017. "Trade Shocks and Far-Right Voting: Evidence from French Presidential Elections," RSCAS Working Papers 2017/21, European University Institute.
    22. Brian Burgoon, 2011. "GINI DP 14: Inequality and anti-globalization backlash by political parties," GINI Discussion Papers 14, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.

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