Multi-level voting and party competition in vertically simultaneous elections: the case of Ukraine

Ailsa Henderson, Valentyna Romanova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Vertically simultaneous elections to state-wide and regional legislatures provide us with a naturally occurring experiment in which to examine regionalism and multi-level voting. We examine the 2006 vertically and horizontally simultaneous state-wide and regional elections in Ukraine to determine how the internal dynamics of regionalism within a state account for the dissimilarity of voting behaviour across electoral levels. Drawing on the party competition literature we demonstrate that variations in both supply (parties) and demand (voters) produce considerable dissimilarity between regional and state results, with lower levels of consolidation and greater fractionalisation at the regional level. We show that political cleavages operate differently across levels, that regional distinctiveness rather than regional authority better predicts first order-ness in regional elections and that voters display varying tolerance for polarisation at the regional and state level
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-236
Number of pages35
JournalPost-Soviet Affairs
Issue number3
Early online date21 May 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • multi-level voting
  • second-order theory
  • regionalism
  • Ukraine
  • simultaneous elections
  • party competition
  • regional parties


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