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Election forecasting in Lithuania: The case of municipal elections


  • Jastramskis, Mažvydas


This article explores the possibilities for election forecasting in Lithuania, a post-communist country that has a party system which is characterized by high levels of electoral volatility and fragmentation. The main argument of the article is that despite these unfavorable conditions, election forecasting in Lithuania has potential. Since the sample of national parliamentary elections is too limited for statistical modeling, the possibility of forecasting at the level of municipalities in the municipal council elections is discussed. Four factors (local unemployment change, party’s belonging to the national government, population size and lagged vote share) are integrated into a model that strives to predict the vote share of the party that holds the mayor’s post (the dominant political power in the municipal council). The model presented explains more than 70% of the variance in the dependent variable. The case diagnostics reveal that the model predicts municipal election outcomes very accurately.

Suggested Citation

  • Jastramskis, Mažvydas, 2012. "Election forecasting in Lithuania: The case of municipal elections," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 822-829.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:intfor:v:28:y:2012:i:4:p:822-829
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijforecast.2012.05.003

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Campbell, James E., 2008. "Evaluating U.S. presidential election forecasts and forecasting equations," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 259-271.
    2. 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.
    3. Jan Vermeir & Bruno Heyndels, 2006. "Tax policy and yardstick voting in Flemish municipal elections," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(19), pages 2285-2298.
    4. Lewis-Beck, Michael S. & Tien, Charles, 2008. "Forecasting presidential elections: When to change the model," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 227-236.
    5. Rallings, Colin & Thrasher, Michael, 1999. "Local votes, national forecasts - using local government by-elections in Britain to estimate party support," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 153-162, April.
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