As one component of the GLES, a survey among the candidates to the German Bundestag for the German Federal Elections 2017 is being conducted (led by Prof. Dr. Bernhard Weßels). The survey is designed in dual-mode (postal and online). It includes all constituency and party-list candidates of the political parties represented in the Bundestag, as well as those candidates of the Pirate Party and the AfD. This adds up to a total number of approximately 2.500 candidates.
The Candidate Study 2017 builds on four successful predecessor studies conducted in 2002, 2005,2009 and 2013 – the latter already part the GLES (ZA5319 and ZA5716) – and it is also based on experiences gained through international projects such as the European Candidate Study 2009 (as part of PIREDEU). Due to the international cooperation with the Comparative Candidate Survey (CCS), the German Candidate Study 2017 questionnaire also contains the CCS-core questionnaire, which allows international comparison of candidates, their preferences and behavior, e.g. in regard to campaigning.
The survey contains items on the respondents’ background, their recruitment and nomination, campaign efforts and strategies, political preferences and issue positions. Some of the questions are both part of the candidate as well as the cross-section voter survey (component 1). On the one hand, this enables us to compare the voters’ and candidates’ preferences. On the other hand, the impact of local campaigning on voting behavior can be analyzed. Additionally, aggregate characteristics of the constituencies, gained from official statistics, allow the socio-demographic context to be taken into account.