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An Improved Statistical Model for Multiparty Electoral Data

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  • Honaker, James
  • Katz, Jonathan K.
  • King, Gary

Abstract

Katz and King (1999) develop a model for predicting or explaining aggregate electoral results in multiparty democracies. Their model is, in principle, analogous to what least squares regression provides American politics researchers in that two-party system. Katz and King applied their model to three-party elections in England and revealed a variety of new features of incumbency advantage and where each party pulls support from. Although the mathematics of their statistical model covers any number of political parties, it is computationally very demanding, and hence slow and numerically imprecise, with more than three. The original goal of our work was to produce an approximate method that works quicker in practice with many parties without making too many theoretical compromises. As it turns out, the method we offer here improves on Katz and King's (in bias, variance, numerical stability, and computational speed) even when the latter is computationally feasible. We also offer easy-to-use software that implements our suggestions.

Suggested Citation

  • Honaker, James & Katz, Jonathan K. & King, Gary, 2001. "An Improved Statistical Model for Multiparty Electoral Data," Working Papers 1111, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:clt:sswopa:1111
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