Comparative Voter Turnout in the Canadian Provinces since 1965: The Importance of Context

Alan Siaroff, Jared J Wesley


The relationship between voter turnout and individual-level determinants are well known. So is the ongoing decline in turnout over time. Yet political participation is also shaped by local factors and election contexts. This is certainly true across the Canadian provinces, where there has been a broad spectrum of turnout levels ranging from Prince Edward Island at the top to Alberta at the bottom. Using data on all 134 provincial elections from 1965 to 2014, we find three additional core determinants of voter turnout across the provinces: the competitiveness and multipartism of their elections, the embeddedness (local identification) of their populations, and the progressiveness of their electorates.

Full Text:


@Canadian Political Science Review (CPSR). ISSN 1911-4125