EAST PaC Data

This webpage describes the East European Parliamentarian and Candidate data (EAST PaC) for Ukraine, Poland, and Hungary, 1985 – 2014. EAST PaC contains the near universe of candidates who ran for the national legislature in Poland, Hungary, and Ukraine and spans the 1990s to the 2010s (Polish data goes back to 1985). All told, EAST PaC covers three countries, 29 years, 23 elections, and 97,439 unique candidates. These data are freely and publicly available and are archived in Poland’s Social Data Archive (Archiwum Danych Społecznych).

To cite EAST PaC:

East European Parliamentarian and Candidate Data (EAST PaC), 1985–2014. Version 1.0. Funded by Poland’s National Science Centre (decision number 2012/05/E/HS6/03556).

The main sources of these data are official records found in each country’s electoral commissions. Details on the methodology for EAST PaC – collecting, cleaning, and matching – are found in the book, Towards Electoral Control in Central and Eastern Europe.

Table 1 summarizes the sources and scope of EAST PaC data. While Hungary has only post-Communist elections, Polish data goes back to the Communist Party controlled elections of 1985. All told, EAST PaC covers three countries, 29 years, 23 elections, and 97,439 unique candidates.

Table 1. Summary of EAST PaC Data Ukraine, Poland, and Hungary 

Ukraine Poland Hungary
House of Parliament Verkhovna Rada Sejm and Senat Orszaggyules
Period covered 1990-2014 1985-2011 1990-2010
Number of elections 8 9 6
Number of unique candidates 35,791 46,426 15,222
Main source of data Central Election Commission [Центральнa виборчa комісіa] National Electoral Commission [Państwowa Komisja Wyborcza] National Election office [Nyilvantarto es Valasztasi Hivatal]

EAST PaC data are separated into each country: one for Ukraine, one for Poland, and one for Hungary. Table 2 is a visual representation of the elections in these countries of Central and Eastern Europe over time. Electoral volatility within the electoral systems led to special elections (Details on these elections are found later in the book, in Part Three: Context) Ukraine and Poland have had a few special elections, while Hungary has had only regular, four-year elections since their first post-Communist election held in 1990. Only in 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006 and 2007 do elections overlap across nations.

Table 2. Elections Covered in EAST PaC, 1985 – 2014 

Year Ukraine Poland Hungary
1985 X
1989 X
1990 X X
1991 X
1992
1993 X
1994 X X
1995
1996
1997 X
1998 X X
1999
2000
2001 X
2002 X X
2003
2004
2005 X
2006 X X
2007 X X
2008
2009
2010 X
2011 X
2012 X
2013
2014 X

The structure of EAST PaC is similar to that of panel data. These data are matched over time, meaning that the same candidate can be identified whenever they appear across successive elections. Table 3 is a visual representation of the structure of these data; it is the same structure across all EAST PaC data files. As a simple illustration, for “Country Z,” we present three generic candidates: A, B and C. Variables are specific for each election year. For example, Variable Y 1990 applies only to the 1990 election, and not to the elections of 1994 and 1998. Variable Y 1994 applies only to the 1994 election, and not to the elections of 1990 or 1998. In this illustration, the letter X represents the value of the variable; “missing” indicates no value for that variable.

In Country Z:

Candidate A ran for office only once, in 1994. The have a value in Variable Y 1994, and have missing values in the variables for the other election years.

Candidate B ran for office every year: 1990, 1994, and 1998. They have values in all variables: Variable Y 1990, Variable Y 1994, and Variable Y 1998.

Candidate C was a candidate in 1990. But in 1994, this person did not run for office and thus was not a candidate that election year. This person re-emerged as a candidate in 1998. They have values only in Variable Y 1990 and Variable Y 1998, the years in which they appear as a candidate.

Table 3. Generic Structure of EAST PaC Data

Unique Candidate ID Variable Y 1990 Variable Y 1994 Variable Y 1998
Candidate A missing X missing
Candidate B X X X
Candidate C X missing X

In each election year, for each country, there is a different configuration of candidates. Table 4 presents the number of candidates per country and per election year. As discussed in Table 3, some candidates appear in multiple elections; thus, the total number of unique candidates cannot be computed from this table.

east pac cands picTable 4. Candidates per Election Year in the Countries of EAST PaC

Election Year Ukraine Poland Hungary
1985 867
1989 2352
1990 2815 3340
1991 7592
1993 9471
1994 6536 5187
1997 6953
1998 6219 4256
2001 7937
2002 6954 3378
2005 11281
2006 7588 2795
2007 4848 6572
2010 2471
2011 7535
2012 5201
2014 6432

Available Variables

EAST PaC relies on official sources and thus has a limited array of variables that varies by country and election year. Table 5 presents the demographic variables available for each EAST PaC country. Name, year of birth, and gender are consistently available across all countries and all elections. Occupation is available in raw form for the 2006 – 2014 elections in Ukraine, and for Poland it is available in various forms between 1989 and 2011, and in Hungary, occupation is not available at all. Education is available only in Ukraine and from 1994 to 2014.

Table 5. Demographic Variables in EAST PaC, 1985 – 2014

Variable Ukraine

(1990 – 2014)

Poland

(1985 – 2011)

Hungary

(1990 – 2010)

Full Name ALL ALL ALL
Year of Birth/Age ALL ALL ALLa
Gender ALL ALL ALL
Occupation 2006 – 2012b 1989 – 2011 None
Education 1994 – 2014 None None

ALL =  all elections; [Year] = election years in which these variables are available. 

a In 2010, there is a relatively high percent of missing values on the variable, Year of Birth. For an explanation, see Chapter Six, this book. 

b These data are available in raw form, upon request. They are not archived along with the rest of the data.

Electoral Characteristics

Electoral variables vary across elections, but there are some core variables that each country has (Table 6).  Party and district are available across all countries and elections. Votes received (except for Poland in the 1980s) and whether the candidate was elected is also generally available. However, list position is only available in Ukraine from 1998 and in Poland from 1991 and in Hungary only in 2010.

Table 6. Electoral Variables in East PaC, 1985 – 2014

Variable Ukraine

(1990 – 2014)

Poland

(1985 – 2011)

Hungary

(1990 – 2010)

Party ALL ALL ALL
District ALL ALL ALL
List Position 1998 – 2014 1991 – 2011 2010
Votes Received ALL 1991 – 2011 ALL
Elected or Not ALL ALL ALL

ALL =  all elections; [Year] = election years in which these variables are available.

Electoral rules change and thus EAST PaC contains electoral variables that are specific for each country and each election. The array of such special variables for Ukraine and Poland are below (Tables 7 and 8). For Hungary, see the book, Appendix Two. 

Table 7. Variables in EAST PaC Unique to Ukraine per Election Year, 1990 – 2014

Election Year Variables Unique to Ukraine per Election Year
1990 Okrug, Oblast, number of votes received in the first round, won first round, elected for the second round, number of votes received in the second round, won second round
1994 Okrug, Oblast, number of votes received in the first round, won first round, elected for the second round, number of votes received in the second round, won second round, was a candidate in additional elections, number of votes received in the additional elections, won first round of additional elections, elected to the second round of additional elections, number of votes received in the second round of additional elections, won second round of additional elections, new district if assigned for additional elections
1998 Okrug districts for majoritarian candidates, oblast for districts, blocks for elections, candidates by majoritarian system, candidates by party lists, candidates by both, party lists and majoritarian system, votes by majoritarian system, won by party list or majoritarian system
2002 Okrug districts for party candidates from which they campaign, oblast for these districts, oblast that candidate actually lives in, majoritarian or party candidate, blocks for elections
2006 Okrug districts for party candidates from which they campaign, oblast for these districts, oblast that candidate actually lives in, blocks for elections
2007 Oblast that candidate actually lives in, blocks for elections
2012 Okrug districts for party candidates from which they campaign, oblast for these districts, oblast that candidate actually lives in, majoritarian or party candidate
2014 Okrug districts for party candidates from which they campaign, oblast for these districts, oblast that candidate actually lives in, majoritarian or party candidate

 

 Table 8. Variables in EAST PaC Unique to Poland per Election Year, 1985 – 2011

Election Year Variables Unique to Poland per Election Year
1985 Limited to the Sejm and only contains age, gender, type of electoral list (district or national), and electoral district
1989 Data for Sejm and Senat, and has the same as 1991 to 2011, except it has type of electoral list (coded same as in 1985) and does not have list position or party affiliation
1991 For the Sejm: Type of electoral list, regular or supplementary elections
1993 For the Sejm: Type of electoral list, regular or supplementary elections, party affiliation and party electoral list
1997 For the Sejm: name of party committee, name of party affiliation/membership, and party electoral list
2001 For the Senat: Party affiliation and party electoral list
2005 Nothing unique for this election year
2007 Nothing unique for this election year
2011 Place of residence (name of village/town). For Senat: Electoral one-seat constituencies and Electoral committee.
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