Democratization, Electoral Systems Choice, and the Formation of Parties

In the ongoing project, I work on suffrage extension, multiparty competition in majoritarian electoral systems with single and multimember districts, the introduction of proportional representation, and the formation of parties. The focus of the project is on Western Europe, Australia, Canada, and the USA as well as the Swiss cantons in the 19th and early 20th century. In my recent publications, I investigate the introduction of PR in Belgium and Switzerland, how electoral advances of radical parties affect electoral strategies of established parties, and the formation of the catholic workers’ movement. My current focus is on the design of electoral districts and state responses to the emergence of new political actors. To advance the literature also methodologically, I employ natural experiments and historical micro data.


The Social Origins of Christian Democracy. Rural-Urban Migration, Interest Group Preemption and the Rise of the Catholic Workers’ Movement, Socio-Economic Review, 2020

Disproportional Threat: Redistricting as an Alternative to Proportional Representation [with Patrick Emmenegger], The Journal of Politics, 2019

When Dominant Parties Adopt PR. The Mysterious Case of Belgium [With Patrick Emmenegger], European Political Science Review, 2019

Majority Protection. The Origins of Distorted Proportional Representation [with Patrick Emmenegger], Electoral Studies, 2019

The Partisan Composition of Cantonal Governments in Switzerland, 1848-2017. A new Dataset [with Patrick Emmenegger], Swiss Political Science Review, 2018