Call for paper

Swiss Political Science Review (SPSR) Special Issue: The 2019 Swiss National Elections

Guest editors:

Nathalie Giger (University of Geneva)

Denise Traber (University of Basel)

Anke Tresch (FORS/University of Lausanne)


The 2019 parliamentary elections in Switzerland saw an unprecedented “green wave” with Green parties winning 13.2% (Green Party) and 7.8% (Green Liberals) of the vote respectively. The elections thus resulted in a marked shift to the left in the National Council even though the Social Democratic Party lost seats. While remaining the largest party, the Swiss People’s Party (SVP) experienced a considerable loss of votes and seats which marks a new situation for the party accustomed to success. At the same time and in the aftermath of the national women strike in June 2019, women representation rose to a new record of around 42% in the National Council (compared to 32% in 2015). Twelve women were elected to the Council of States (compared with seven in 2015), which corresponds to a proportion of around 26%.

For this Special Issue, we invite contributions that focus on new theoretical, methodological or empirical aspects in the study of election campaigns and voting behaviour in Switzerland and in comparative perspective. Preference will be given to contributions based on data from the Swiss Election Study Selects, but we are also open to papers studying various aspects of the 2019 elections based on other data (e.g., political campaign ads, smartvote, etc.) or papers that include other (Swiss) elections as well.

In 2019, the Selects study collected the following data1:

  • An online/paper post-election survey among 6,664 Swiss citizens.
  • A three-wave online panel survey (with a pre-campaign wave, N=7,939; a campaign wave, N=5,577; and a post-election wave, N=5,125).
  • A media study based on an automated content analysis of articles from 87 different Swiss newspapers and magazines, which allows identifying the most important actors and issues in the traditional media during the campaign, as well as a content analysis of parties’ and candidates’ social media platforms (Twitter and Facebook)
  • An online/paper candidate survey among candidates for the National Council and the Council of States (N=2,158).

We particularly encourage work that adopts a comparative or longitudinal perspective, as well as contributions related to the various new questions and modules included in the 2019 surveys (e.g., EU-related attitudes, online political participation), and papers that combine the various datasets in an innovative way.

Proposals for this Special Issue should be sent to Anke Tresch ( by August 31, 2020. Proposals should be no longer than one page. Acceptance notifications will be emailed by September 15, 2020. Accepted proposals must be presented in a workshop in late January 2021 and submitted to the usual peer review process in April 2021. As a service to students and as a statement towards research transparency and replicability, authors will be asked to publish their codes online. If accepted, this Special Issue could be published in mid 2022. For any further queries, do not hesitate to contact the Guest Editors.

1 Data and questionnaires can be accessed from