Participation in Indigenous Democracy: Voter Turnout in Sámi Parliamentary Elections in Norway and Sweden
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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This article compares and analyzes voter turnout in the 2013 elections to the Sámi parliaments in Norway and Sweden, using data from voter surveys. Is voting in these elections motivated by the same factors that explain turnout in national parliamentary elections? First, the study showed that a common election day for national and Sámi elections is an important reason for the higher turnout in Norway. Second, involvement in Sámi society was the most important factor for explaining turnout in both countries. General political resources and motivation had some explanatory power in Norway, but not in Sweden. This possibly reflects a more far-reaching difference between Sámi politics in Norway and Sweden. In Norway, the Sámi electorate seems to be more politically integrated in the national polity, and the institutional ties between Sámi and national politics are stronger. This may be explained in part by the historical legacy of each state’s policy.