Closed List

In a list proportional representation (PR) electoral system, parties present voters with a list of candidates to elect multiple candidates in a district. In a closed list PR system, you cast your vote for a party list, not for a specific candidate. The number of district seats that a party wins is determined by how many votes its list obtains. Once the seats have been allocated to the parties, the seats are then allocated to the candidates on each list, starting at the top. If a party wins three district seats, then it allocates these seats to the top three candidates on its list. This electoral system is called a "closed" list system because voters cannot give their votes to specific candidates and have no say over the order of the candidates on the list; the party list is determined by the party and is "closed" to the voters.

Advantages and disadvantages:

One advantage of all proportional representation systems is that they tend to produce proportional outcomes in which parties receive district seats in rough proportion to their share of the district vote. Among list proportional representation (PR) electoral systems, one advantage of closed list systems is that they encourage disciplined parties in the legislature, because individual legislators know that they must vote with their party leadership in order to obtain a high position on the party list.

One disadvantage is that voters do not get to indicate their support for particular candidates. A second disadvantage is that elected legislators often have an incentive to listen more to their party leadership than to the voters. This is because it is the party leadership that determines their position on the party list and hence their chances of being reelected.

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For those interested in mathematics you can find more information about how votes are translated into seats here.