Nationalization of elections refers to a situation whereby parties compete across the statewide territory where they win equally sized vote shares. This chapter traces the development in the conceptualization and measurement of the nationalization of elections. Nationalization is often broken down into a distributional and temporal dimension and scholars assess the extent to which vote shares (static nationalization) and vote share swings (dynamic nationalization) are similar across the territory. The argument put forward in this chapter is that the inclusion of regional elections entails more than settling measurement issues as it allows us to study the linkages or spillovers between national and regional electoral arenas. This chapter claims that denationalization should be studied in a multilevel electoral context which involves studying dynamic and static nationalization for both parties and regions in both regional and national elections as well as examining the extent to which electoral dynamics spill-over back and forth between regional and national electoral arenas.
Emanuele Massetti and Arjan H. Schakel
This chapter analyses the impact of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) on the attitudes of regionalist parties towards the process of European integration. The authors consider three distinct funding periods: 1989_1993, 1994_1999 and 2000_2006. The chapter shows that the regionalist party family have been overwhelmingly Europhile in the first and second period, while they have shown a clear turn towards Euroscepticism in the latter period. However, the Eurosceptic turn is not linked to changes in the ERDF. In fact, the authors find a positive effect of the relative share of ERDF on regionalist parties’ level of support for European integration. In particular, their data suggest that the ERDF has been an important facilitator for the spreading of Europhile positions in the first period analysed (1989_1993) and has represented a kind of barrier against the diffusion of Eurosceptic positions in the last period analysed (2000_2006). The migration of ERDF funding from Western to Central and Eastern European member states, therefore, can further undermine the capacity of the EU to maintain the loyalty of this small but still important party family.