Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Partisan Cues and Vote Choice in New Multiparty Systems

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rosario AguilarORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Sage Publications, Inc., 2016.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


There are numerous studies of the effects of partisan cues in established party systems, but almost none on how they affect voting in new party systems. This lacuna might stem from untested assumptions that partisan cues are un-influential where parties lack multigenerational psychological bonds with citizens and long-standing records. Alternatively, we theorize that even in new party systems, voters use partisan cues to assess candidates’ capabilities, preferences, and electoral viability. We test this theory through an experiment in which we varied inclusion of party identifiers on mock ballots in Uganda, where the multiparty system was only 5 years old. We find that partisan cues increased selection of major-party candidates over independents, casting of straight-ticket ballots, and votes for copartisans. Our results challenge the common assumption that partisan labels are irrelevant in new party systems. Partisan cues can influence political decision making, even when party systems are young.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Conroy-Krutz J, Moehler D, Aguilar R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Comparative Political Studies

Year: 2016

Volume: 49

Issue: 1

Pages: 3-35

Print publication date: 01/01/2016

Online publication date: 15/09/2015

Acceptance date: 14/04/2015

Date deposited: 19/08/2019

ISSN (print): 0010-4140

ISSN (electronic): 1552-3829

Publisher: Sage Publications, Inc.


DOI: 10.1177/0010414015603015


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric


Funder referenceFunder name
University of Pennsylvania Annenberg School