Breaking the cartel: The geography of the electoral support of new parties in Italy and Spain

Pedro Riera*, Luana Russo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The factors explaining the emergence and electoral success of new parties have been investigated extensively on a cross-national basis, but little is known about why their vote shares differ within a specific country at any given time. This article is an attempt to fill this gap by examining the determinants of electoral support of Podemos and Movimento 5 Stelle across Spanish and Italian municipalities. Using empirical evidence from the 2014 European Parliament elections, we show that a bad economic situation at the local level increases the vote shares of these parties. We also demonstrate that these parties perform better in towns where abstention rates have previously increased, and the population is comparatively younger, and the possible existence of interaction effects between all these factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-241
Number of pages23
JournalItalian Political Science Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016


  • new parties
  • economic crisis
  • public discontent
  • electoral habituation

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