Psephology


Psephology

Psephology (from Greek "psephos" ψῆφος, 'pebble', which the Greeks used as ballots) is the statistical analysis of elections. Psephology uses compilations of precinct voting returns for elections going back some years, public opinion polls, campaign finance information and similar statistical data. The term was coined in the United Kingdom in 1952 by historian R. B. McCallum to describe the scientific analysis of past elections. In Britain the term occasionally appears in scholarly literature.

Psephology also has various applications specifically in analysing the results of election returns for current indicators, as opposed to predictive purposes. For instance, the Gallagher Index measures the disproportionality of an election.

References

* William Safire. "New Political Dictionary", Random House, New York 1993.

See also

* British Polling Council
* List of democracy and elections-related topics

External links

* [http://www.aceproject.org ACE Project] - Comprehensive information resource for Electoral Design and Administartion. Includes much comparative data on elections and electoral systems
* [http://psephos.adam-carr.net/ 'Psephos'] Dr. Adam Carr's Elections Archive
* [http://www.idea.int International IDEA] - International Organisation providing (amongst other things) statistical analysis of elections and electoral systems


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  • psephology — [sē fäl′ə jē] n. [< Gr psēphos, pebble (used in voting): see PSEPHITE & LOGY] the statistical evaluation of election returns or of political polls psephological [sēfə läj′i kəl] adj. psephologist n …   English World dictionary

  • psephology — [20] The term psephology ‘study of voting patterns’ was coined in the early 1950s by R B McCallum from Greek pséphos ‘pebble’. Pebbles were used in ancient Greece for casting votes, and so pséphos came to mean metaphorically ‘vote’ – hence… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • psephology — [20] The term psephology ‘study of voting patterns’ was coined in the early 1950s by R B McCallum from Greek pséphos ‘pebble’. Pebbles were used in ancient Greece for casting votes, and so pséphos came to mean metaphorically ‘vote’ – hence… …   Word origins

  • psephology — noun Etymology: Greek psēphos pebble, ballot, vote; from the use of pebbles by the ancient Greeks in voting Date: 1952 the scientific study of elections • psephological adjective • psephologist noun …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • psephology — psephological / feuh loj i keuhl/, adj. psephologist, n. /see fol euh jee/, n. the study of elections. [1950 55; < Gk psêpho(s) pebble + LOGY; so called from the Athenian custom of casting votes by means of pebbles] * * * …   Universalium

  • psephology — noun The predictive or statistical study of elections. See Also: psephocracy …   Wiktionary

  • psephology — pse|phol|o|gy [seˈfɔlədʒi US si:ˈfa: ] n [U] BrE technical [Date: 1900 2000; : Greek; Origin: psephos small stone, vote ; because the ancient Greeks used small stones for voting] the study of how people vote in elections >psephologist n …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • psephology — The study of elections, voting patterns, and electoral behaviour, and the forecasting of election results. This became a specialist field of political sociology with the spread of regular opinion polls on voting intentions, major post election… …   Dictionary of sociology

  • psephology — study of election results and voting trends Sciences and Studies …   Phrontistery dictionary

  • psephology — [sɛ fɒlədʒi, sɪ ] noun the statistical study of elections and trends in voting. Derivatives psephological adjective psephologist noun Origin 1950s: from Gk psēphos pebble, vote + logy …   English new terms dictionary