Democratic Musical Chairs? Romania's Post-1989 Electoral Geography

Aurelian Giugal, Ron Johnston*, Stefan Constantinescu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Romania is one of a number of states that experienced a rapid shift to representative democracy after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. In a well-known model of electoral developments in newly emerging democracies, Flint and Taylor have identified a characteristic volatility of support for political parties between elections because of their failure to meet popular expectations, which is accompanied by a volatile electoral geography. The experience of Romania over its first six elections since its 1989/90 transition to democracy fits the first part of that model: no party elected to power won the subsequent election and there has been considerable change in the structure of the party system. This has not been parallelled by comparable volatility in the country's electoral geography, however, which remained remarkably stable over the first five of the six elections: the last election in the sequence so far-in 2008-saw the geography change somewhat, however, consequent on the decline of strident, populist Romania nationalism and a decline in support for parties built on the communist foundation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-161
Number of pages19
JournalSpace and Polity
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011


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