Recent and Past Events

Theoretical and Empirical Advances in the Study of Promissory Representation

Panel, American Political Science Association Annual Meeting and Exhibition, 2022

The papers in this panel present some of the latest advances in the field and include new theories and evidence on why parties make different kinds of promises, the conditions under which promises are kept and broken, and the electoral consequences of election pledges.

The first paper by Frank Rindert Algra-Maschio, Sonam Thomas and Robert Thomson, Keeping Election Campaign Promises When the Unexpected Happens, advances a theory of how unexpected events, economic or natural disasters such as the COVID pandemic, shape the ability of government parties to fulfill election pledges.

The paper by Christian Arnold, Hannah Dorothy Bechara and Slava Jankin Mikhaylov, Election Pledges and the Politics of the Psychological Distance, also engages in theory-building by bringing in insights from political psychology to assess how the rhetorical distance that politicians use affects pledge fulfillment. 

The third paper in this panel, Promises Kept, Promises Broken, and Those Caught in the Middle by Tabitha Bonilla, also applies concepts from political psychology at the level of voters to demonstrate that voters have a nuanced understanding of promises made by candidates. 

The final paper, Pledge-Making by US Political Parties: A Longitudinal Study by E.J. Fagan and Petia A. Kostadinova, uses longitudinal data from the United States to test the notion that pledge-making has increased over time. Further, they bring in concepts from political discourse (polarization) and political psychology (in-group preferences) to the forefront in explanations about pledge-making. 

Taken together, the four papers in this panel extend CPP concepts, develop new theoretical expectations, and present newly collected data from Australia, Scotland, Sweden, and the United States.

Comparative Pledges Project Workshop

Online workshop, 2021 

The workshop was an open and inclusive forum for sharing research on parties’ election campaign promises. The common approach was to focus on promises that are ‘testable.’ CPP researchers presented contributions that were oriented toward theory, new evidence, methods, and/or journalistic practice. It included presentations by 60 researchers across eight panels.

New Frontiers in Comparative Research on Parties’ Election Pledges

Panel, American Political Science Association (APSA) Annual Meeting, 2020

The APSA panel featured four separate papers by CPP scholars on comparative pledge fulfillment with data from India, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Turkey, and the United States. The theoretical advances in the papers included formulating and testing new propositions on the conditions under which election pledges are more or less likely to be made and fulfilled, focusing on contexts that had not yet been thoroughly studied.

New Avenues for Comparative Research on Election Pledges

Panel, European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) General Conference, 2020

The ECPR panel featured four separate papers by CPP scholars. The papers contributed to the cumulative growth of knowledge on election pledges by applying the same established concepts and research procedures as existing CPP research while adding significant theoretical and empirical developments.