Patnáct let studií komunálních voleb
Fifteen Years of Municipal Election Studies
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This review article compares four edited monographs that represent a core of municipal election studies in the Czech Republic. Most Czech political scientists didn’t pay attention to elections in the local political arena before 2002 when the fourth elections after the renewal of local government in 1990 were held. Earlier monographs were largely indebted to data gathered by the Czech Statistical Office. Their authors usually commented on data on an aggregated level and prepared case studies of chosen municipalities that included: a description of election campaigns, an analysis of programmatic statements and the role of coalition bargaining. Recently political scientists have been able to gather more comprehensive datasets which have in turn allowed them to apply more sophisticated analytical techniques. Moreover, political scientists can now include data from almost every municipality in the Czech Republic which has, in turn, allowed them to identify the size of the municipality (both geographically and in terms of voters) as a key independent variable. In this way a highly fragmented territorial structure is better represented than in older works. Finally, the political, personal and career profiles of mayors have begun to appear as a new topic in recent publications. The challenge for the future is how to address not only domestic but foreign audiences too.
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