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Newsletter February 2015

Newsletter February 2015 to the member of ECPR’s Standing Group on Public Opinion and Voting Behaviour in a Comparative Perspective

1. Call for Proposals, ECPR General Conference 2015
The standing group initiated two section proposals for the ECPR General conference in Montreal Canada (August 26-29, 2015). Both of them were accepted by the ECPR and both will comprise the maximum number of panels (8).
Here is an overview of the sections, panels and panel chairs.

Section S58
The Study of Elections: Comparative Perspectives, Methodological Challenges

Section Chair: Andre Blais, Université de Montréal
Email: andre.blais@umontreal.ca

Section Co-Chair: Elisabeth Gidengil, McGill University
Email: elisabeth.gidengil@mcgill.ca

Panels
- Campaign effects
Panel chair: Richard Johnston, University of British Columbia
Email: rgcjohnston@gmail.co

- Turnout
Panel chair: Hanna Wass, University of Helsinki
Email: hanna.wass@helsinki.fi

- Personality and voting
Panel chair: Markus Steinbrecher, University of Mannheim
Email: markus.steinbrecher@uni-mannheim.d

- Strategic voting:
Panel chair: Laura Stephenson, University of Western Ontario
Email: lstephe8@uwo.ca

- The impact of party leaders:
Panel chair: Loes Aaldering, University of Amsterdam
Email: L.Aaldering@uva.nl

- The impact of institutions,
Panel chair: John Aldrich, Duke University
Email: aldrich24@gmail.com

- Elections and accountability:
Panel chair: Kees Aarts, University of Twente
Email: c.w.a.m.aarts@utwente.nl

- Consideration set models
Panel chair: Henrik Oscarsson, University of Gothenburg
Email: henrik.oscarsson@pol.gu.se

Further details about the section can be found at the following address (note the updated list of panel chairs above is accurate, rather than the one shown on the ECPR website): http://www.ecpr.eu/Events/SectionDetails.aspx?SectionID=430&EventID=94

Section S45
Public Opinion, Political Attitudes and Values

Section chair: Oddbjørn Knutsen, University of Oslo
Email: oddbjorn.knutsen@stv.uio.no

Section Co-Chair: Patrick Fournier, Université de Montréal
Email: patrick.fournier@umontreal.ca

Panels
- Institutional effects on political attitudes and values
Panel Chair: Shane Singh, University of Georgia
Email: singh@uga.edu

- Psychological effects on political attitudes and values
Panel Chair: Patrick Fournier, Université de Montréal
Email: patrick.fournier@umontreal.ca

- Health effects on political attitudes and values
Panel Chair: Elisabeth Gidengil, McGill University
Email: elisabeth.gidengil@mcgill.ca

- The structure of political attitudes and values
Panel Chair: André Freire, Lisbon University Institute
Email: andre.freire@meo.pt

- The stability of political attitudes and values
Panel Chair: Ruth Dassonneville, University of Leuven
Email: ruth.dassonneville@soc.kuleuven.be

- The impacts of values on political attitudes
Panel Chair: Romain Lachat, Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Email: romain.lachat@upf.edu

- The impacts of political attitudes and values on party choice
Panel Chair: Oddbjørn Knutsen, University of Oslo
Email: oddbjorn.knutsen@stv.uio.no

- The impacts of political attitudes and values on political participation
Panel Chair: Allison Harell, Université du Québec à Montréal
Email: harell.allison@uqam.ca

Further details about the section can be found at the following address (note the updated list of panel chairs above is accurate, rather than the one shown on the ECPR website): http://ecpr.eu/Events/SectionDetails.aspx?SectionID=433&EventID=94

General information:

The ECPR accepts both paper and panel proposals. The deadline for both types of proposals is February 16th, 2015.

Researchers interested in being part of a panel proposal should contact the panel chair to see if a panel proposal is being constructed for a given panel. If that is not the case, interested researchers are invited to submit an individual paper proposal. The latter should be done on the ECPR website.

For more information regarding both sections, please contact the section chairs or co-chairs.

2. Constitution for the standing group
The Executive Committee of ECPR has – after considerable debate – worked out a Framework for standing groups and research networks.

The various standing groups have to follow the rules which are outlined in this framework. Attached to the framework is a “Default Constitution for ECPR Standing Groups”. We as conveners have – in cooperation with the steering committee – worked out a constitution proposal that deviates from the default constitution first and foremost regarding the elections of what is now called a steering committee (no conveners any longer). We decided that the committee should consist of three scholars that are responsible for different subfields of our research field. An election committee should look for potential candidates, formulate a proposal to the business meeting of the standing group which then votes on the proposed alternatives. Additional, single members of the standing group can also come up with alternative candidates during the process. For details regarding the constitution proposal, see here.

The constitution proposal will be discussed and decided upon at the business meeting of the standing group at the general conference in Montreal.

3. Election for the steering committee of the standing group in 2015
After six years, the present conveners will step down in 2015 and let other take over the leadership of our standing group. Hence, there will be an election for a new steering committee at the business meeting in Montreal during the general conference. The members of the present steering group (Gabor Toka, Elisabeth Gidengil, Marina Costa Lobo, Ioannis Andreadis) will each appoint one member of the election committee. Their election committee proposal will then be announced in a Newsletter in the spring 2015. It will then be possible for the members of the standing group to come up with alternative candidates. The final list of candidates will be presented for election in Montreal.

4. Report from the first Leuven-Montréal Winter School on elections and voting behaviour
The first Leuven-Montréal Winter School on elections and voting behaviour took place in Leuven, Belgium from 15 to 22 January.
The kick-off was given by Mr. Denis Robert, Ambassador of Canada to Belgium and Luxembourg, during the opening reception the evening before.
Twenty-three doctoral students from various universities and countries like Austria, Canada, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and the UK, were selected as participants.
During 7 full days they gathered in the same meeting room and in the mornings they attended lectures of highly qualified professors and teachers like André Blais and Patrick Fournier (Université de Montréal), Michael S. Lewis-Beck (University of Iowa), Claes de Vreese (University of Amsterdam), Romain Lachat (Universitat Pompeu Fabra), and Marc Hooghe and Ruth Dassonneville (KU Leuven).
Topics addressed at this first edition were:
• Approaches and determinants of voting behaviour
• Conducting research on voting behaviour
• Economic voting
• Strategic voting
• Political psychology and voting behaviour
• Media effects on voting behaviour
• Issue voting
• Voting as a form of political participation
The participants to the Winter School program had to submit papers beforehand and these were assigned to an afternoon session for presentation. The Winter School faculty members served as discussants for the student papers, and with 45 minutes allocated to each paper, there was sufficient time for high-quality feedback and discussions.
The evenings were not only used for reading up the teachers’ materials for the next day, but more importantly, to socialize as well. The participants really got to know each other well and undoubtedly, they have formed some long-lasting professional and personal bonds during their stay in Leuven.
At the end of the Winter School, all students were asked to fill in an evaluation form. The average appreciation for the Winter School was 8.7/10, which is very high for this kind of PhD training. We can therefore conclude that the students were very satisfied about the program. Self-evidently, their specific suggestions for further improvement will be taken on board in organizing the 2nd edition.
The Winter School is organized jointly by the universities of Leuven and Montréal. The 2016 edition will take place in Montréal (Canada).

Ruth Dassonneville (University of Leuven),
Patrick Fournier (Université de Montréal)
Marc Hooghe (University of Leuven)
Organizing committee of the winter school

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