Upcoming Conference includes Election Reform papers

This week, the American Political Science Association holds their annual meeting in Chicago. For long time members, this year is different because, for the first time in my memory, we aren’t using the two Hilton hotels, and instead are locating near the Riverfront at the Sheraton and the Hyatt. So much for those long, and often windy, walks along Michigan Avenue from the Palmer House to the Hilton. This also means you cannot rely on Murphy’s Pub to find your colleagues after dinner. How will APSA survive?

For readers of this blog, though, what has changed is that election administration and election reform has finally made it onto the agenda of the APSA membership.

Lee Sigelman, editor of the American Political Science Review, initiated the first strike with an excellent set of articles on elections. First, Cusack Iverson and Soskice have written what I think is a very important piece on the origins of election systems. If you were taught in school that rightist parties adopted PR in the early 20th century in order to forestall the growth of left wing / socialist parties, you need to read this article. Second, Eric Oliver and Shang Ha have a nice piece on local elections in suburban settings, showing how these elections are dominated (even more than usual in the US) by educated and affluent voters. Battaglini, Morton, and and Palfrey have a piece on simultaneous vs. sequential elections that I haven’t absorbed yet (it’s pretty heavy on formal theory). Finally, Matt Barretto has another excellent piece on Latino voting, Latino identity, and turnout.

For those who are interested in forthcoming research, point your browser here, http://apsanet.org/mtgs/program_2007/index.cfm, to APSA’s online program. These search terms work pretty well:

“election reform”
“election law”
“voting machines”

Many of these papers are available at “Proceedings”, which can be found here: http://apsanet.org/section_742.cfm. You need not be a member to search those archives.