A half-century of suffrage: New data and a comparative analysis

  • Pamela Paxton
  • Kenneth A. Bollen
  • Deborah M. Lee
  • HyoJoung Kim
Research Forum


Even though theories of democracy place emphasis on universal suffrage, little attempt has been made to measure the degree of suffrage in a broad range of countries. This article uses qualitative descriptions of suffrage to develop quantitative measures of suffrage for most countries of the world. We present annual suffrage measures from 1950 to 2000, provide basic descriptive statistics, and document trends in suffrage across the world. We also compare our measure of suffrage to two other measures available for 1968 and 1985.


Comparative International Development Qualitative Description Civil Liberty Liberal Democracy Voter Turnout 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pamela Paxton
  • Kenneth A. Bollen
  • Deborah M. Lee
  • HyoJoung Kim

There are no affiliations available

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