About the Comparative National Elections Project

The Comparative National Elections Project (CNEP) is a partnership among scholars who have conducted election surveys across the democratic world. Founded in the late 1980s, it now includes 52 surveys from 1990 to 2017 in 27 different countries on 5 continents, with multiple election surveys in 15 countries. CNEP-based surveys are projected in several future elections.

CNEP logoAt their core, the CNEP surveys focus on common questions on the following research topics: personal discussion networks, use of the mass media (television, newspapers, radio, and various electronic sites), political information from associations, contacts by political parties, socio-political values, attitudes towards democracy, civic participation, the integrity of the electoral process, and voting behavior in the most recent election.

In addition, standard demographic and voting behavior variables also are a part of the CNEP surveys.  As the project has evolved over time, new question modules have been added to capture important aspects of elections in the new member countries and changing conditions, such as populism, in older member countries, and false news–as well as to reflect broadened theoretical perspectives.

At present, CNEP includes surveys in the following places (and elections):

  • Argentina (2007)
  • Bulgaria (1996)
  • Chile (1993, 2000, 2017)
  • China, local elections (2008)
  • Colombia (2014)
  • Dominican Republic (2010)
  • France (2017)
  • Germany (1990, 2017)
  • Great Britain (1992, 2017)
  • Greece (1996, 2004, 2015)
  • Hong Kong (1998, 2015)
  • Hungary (1998, 2006)
  • Indonesia (1999, 2004, 2009, 2014)
  • Iran (2016)
  • Italy (1996, 2006, 2013)
  • Japan (1993)
  • Kenya (2013)
  • Mexico (2006, 2012)
  • Mozambique (2004)
  • Portugal (2005, 2015)
  • Russia (2016)
  • South Africa (2004, 2009, 2014)
  • Spain (1993, 2004, 2011, 2015)
  • Taiwan (2004, 2016)
  • Turkey (2014)
  • United States (1992, 2004, 2012, 2016)
  • Uruguay (1994, 2004)

The Mershon Center for International Security Studies at The Ohio State University is the host for this CNEP website. The center has generously sponsored some of these surveys and research conferences focused on them. The website contains each of the original country surveys and questionnaires; two data sets that merge the common questions from the individual-country data sets; “macro” reports that summarize information concerning each country’s parties and leaders, key structural characteristics relevant to electoral behavior; and various descriptions of the project and its partners.

Data sets are located on two different pages in this website.  Data from all of the surveys conducted through 2012 are freely available to the general public, as is a merged file containing data from 26 national election surveys.  These can be downloaded from the website page called “Surveys through 2012.”  Surveys conducted within the past five years have been reserved in a password-protected file for use by the CNEP principal investigators located in over two dozen countries.  As each data set reaches the end of the fifth year of this embargo, it will be transferred into the publicly available file for general use.

This website also lists numerous publications that have resulted from the individual country studies and from cross-national analyses of their data. Two edited books have been produced by CNEP partners: Gunther, Montero, and Puhle (eds.), Democracy, Intermediation, and Voting on Four Continents (Oxford, 2007); and Gunther, Beck, Magalhães, and Moreno (eds.) Voting in Old and New Democracies (Routledge, 2016).

Richard Gunther and Paul Beck, both of the Department of Political Science and the Mershon Center at Ohio State, are currently the co-directors of CNEP and the administrators of this website. If you have questions about CNEP and its research efforts, please contact them at gunther.1@osu.edu or beck.9@osu.edu.


Posted by Richard Gunther November 20, 2017.