Ye. I. Haydanka. Electoral Cleavages and Fragmentation of Regions in the Slovak Republic: A Case Study of the Parliamentary Elections Held in 1990–2020

UDК 323.174(437.6)

DOI: 10.15507/2413-1407.115.029.202102.230-249

Introduction. Electoral processes in the post-socialist countries have determined their political and party fragmentation, dividing regions into more conservative or liberal ones, those supporting or opposing the “firm leadership” of the country, Eurosceptic or Eurooptimistic. The main objective of the article is to present a comparative analysis of the outcomes of parliamentary elections in the regions, given the existing socio-political splits and the peculiarities of formation of the electoral cleavages.

Materials and Methods. The study was based on the results of the ten parliamentary elections held in the Slovak Republic in 1990–2020. The empirical material covers the macro (national) and micro (regional) levels. The comprehensive comparative method made it possible to single out the main socio-political splits that either confirm or refute electoral cleavages in the regions of the country.

Results. The main socio-political splits in the Slovak Republic have been identified. Given the results of the parliamentary elections in the regions of Slovakia, six electoral cleavages have been recorded (1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2016, and 2020). Two socio-political splits of “Meciarism – anti-Meciarism” (1998) and “Fico – anti-Fico” (2020) proved to be of particular significance for the country. The fragmentation of the Slovak political and party space is represented by two groups of regions: West and East (liberals and social populists), as well as the Center (conservatives).

Discussion and Conclusion. The results of the study can be used when devising an efficient regional development strategy based on minimizing the risks of radicalization of the political space and reducing the overall level of populism in the country.

Keywords: region, regionalization, political fragmentation in the Slovak Republic, socio-political split, electoral cleavages

The author declares that there is no conflict of interest.

For citation: Haydanka Ye.I. Electoral Cleavages and Fragmentation of Regions in the Slovak Republic: A Case Study of the Parliamentary Elections Held in 1990–2020. Regionology = Russian Journal of Regional Studies. 2021; 29(2):230-249. DOI:

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Submitted 09.02.2021; approved after reviewing 05.03.2021; accepted for publication 14.03.2021.

About the author:

Yevheniy I. Haydanka, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Trnava University (23 Hornopotočná St., Trnava 918 43, Slovakia), Cand. Sci. (Political Science), ORCID:, Researcher ID:, Scopus ID: 57218488947,

The author has read and approved the final version of the manuscript.
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