Understanding Post-Devolution Elections in Scotland and Wales in Comparative Perspective

C. Jeffery, D. Hough

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this article, we explore the electoral dynamics of multi-level political systems for the case of the United Kingdom (Scotland and Wales) through a comparison with multi-level voting behaviour in Germany, Spain and Canada. The analysis suggests that sub-state elections can be `second order' in relation to state-wide elections, but that this `second orderness' is reduced when more powers are decentralized to the sub-state level (and, thus, more is at stake in sub-state elections), and if sub-state identities and parties are stronger. Consequently, elections in Scotland and Wales are unlikely to be or become only `second order' to Westminster elections, and British state-wide parties will continue to face challenges and pressures to adapt their organizations and programmes to the devolution of the British state.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-240
Number of pages22
JournalParty Politics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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