January 10-11, 2003
University of California, Irvine

The parliamentary election in 1998 brought the SPD into government for the first time since 1982. In September 2002, Chancellor Schroeder's SPD and the Greens faced the judgment of voters, and barely won reelection. This conference assembles a team of distinguished experts to explain the reasons for the election results--and the longer term implications for German politics. Among the central topics are the policy context of the elections (economics and the EU-context), how voters evaluate the programmatic alternatives offered by parties; how policy priorities affects voters' choice; and whether strong candidate personalities affect voters' decision. In addition, we consider how the policy choices voters made in the election may influence the future course of Germany's domestic and foreign policy choices. The conference findings will be published as a special issue of German Politics and Society in 2003.

The conference was made possible by generous grants from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Institute for Global Conflict and Cooperation at UC San Diego, and the Center for the Study of Democracy at UC Irvine. We greatly appreciate their support for the conference and the publication of the special issue of German Politics and Society to share these findings with the German politics community.

Tentative Program

Friday, January 10

Panel Discussion: The 2002 Elections and the Evolution of the German Party System
Political Science Colloquium Series
2112 Social Science Plaza

Moderator: Russell Dalton, UC Irvine


Dieter Dettke, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung

Dieter Roth, Forschungsgruppe Wahlen
Hans-Dieter Klingemann, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin
Robert Rohrschneider, Indiana University

Saturday, January 10
Inn at Laguna

Welcome and Introduction:
Russell Dalton, UC Irvine
Robert Rohrschneider, Indiana University

The 2002 Bundestagswahl

Predicting 2002 from the Past
Helmut Norpoth, Political Science, SUNY Stony Brook

An Overview of the 2002 Election
Dieter Roth, Forschungsgruppe Wahlen

Party Programs and the 2002 Election
Hans-Dieter Klingemann, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin

Dieter Dettke, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung
Peter Merkl, UC Santa Barbara

How German Voters are Changing

The Wechselwahler: Can't Voters Make up their Minds?
Russell Dalton, Political Science, UC Irvine/Wilhelm Buerklin, Political Science, University of Potsdam

The Influence of Ideological Values and Economic Perceptions on Voting Behavior
Robert Rohrschneider, Indiana University; Dieter Fuchs, Political Science, University of Stuttgart

The Influence of Candidate Image on Party Support
Christopher Anderson, Political Science, SUNY Binghamton; Frank Brettschneider, Universitaet Augsburg

Samuel Barnes, Georgetown University
Shawn Bowler, UC Riverside

Party Change and Policy Implications

Paying the Piper: Changes in Party Finance
Susan Scarrow, Political Science, University of Houston

Germany and the EU in the 2002 Election
William Chandler, Political Science, UC San Diego

Economic Policy Before and after the Election
Werner Reutter, DAAD Professor, University of Minnesota

Alexandra Cole, California State University, Northridge
John Leslie, UC Research Fellow

Conference sessions will be held at the University of California, Irvine and at The Inn at Laguna Beach.



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