Latest projects


Election Compass for British elections 2015

Election Compass provided the opportunity for voters to find out where they stand in the UK political Landscape...


November conferences Election Compass

Symposium Voting Advice Applications, the VOTEADVICE kick-off conference and the seminar “Rejecting Europe or Worried about the crisis? will be held..


Election Compass for Swedish elections 2014

Reaching over 3.2 million voters in Sweden in the run-up to the parliamentary elections, Valkompassen has broken several Vote Advice Application (VAA) records.


Election Compass for the European Elections

A tool for the European elections of 2014 are held on from 22 and 25 May 2014 in Europe.


Election Compass for Turkish Local Elections 2014

Leading Turkish academics joined to develop our first tool for local elections abroad.




Brujula Electoral for the 2016 Spanish General Elections

Brujula Electoral for the 2016 Spanish General Elections

Spanish citizens will be heading to the ballot box on Sunday 26th of June once again, after the Spanish parliament failed to form a government after the 2015 General Elections. These elections promise to be a very interesting competition between the two traditional parties (PP and PSOE) will have to fight with the emerging parties C’s and the newly created left wing coalition Unidos Podemos.

Election Compass developed a nonpartisan voting advice application carefully developed by a team of prestigious academics and political scientists. The academic team is affiliated to numerous universities under the leadership of Ignacio Sanchez-Cuenca, director of the Institute of Social Sciences Carlos III-Juan March (IC3JM) with the only intention of informing the electorate and gather data that would help them in their scientific research. Election Compass collaborates with numerous media-groups (Huffingtonpost, Vocento, Prensa Ibérica, Expansión, Infolibre,…) to promote the Spanish Election Compass The user data analysis provided by Kieskompas have been largely published on these media outlets during the campaign.

‘Continuity or Electoral Turmoil: Turkish Politics in the Aftermath of 2015 Parliamentary Elections’ by Prof. Ali Çarkoğlu

In November 2015 Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan called an early election in an attempt to regain a parliamentary majority, after falling short to do so in June. Erdogan’s ruling AK Party received much more support in the re-run and thus increased
its leverage over the domestic decision-making process.Poster

In the light of the ongoing war at Turkey’s borders (in particularly in Syria and Iraq), the refugee crisis, the fight against the Islamic State (IS), as well as the growing domestic challenges to democratization, it is crucial to understand what the future holds for Turkey after the 2015 elections: continuity or electoral turmoil?

In his lecture Prof. Ali Çarkoğlu, will talk about the current state of Turkish politics. For this presentation and a following Q&A, Chatham House rules apply.

Ali Çarkoğlu is a Professor of Political Science at Koç University in Istanbul. He is the driving force behind electoral research and election studies in Turkey and is a widely appreciated commentator on Turkish politics and elections. Professor Çarkoğlu’s is an expert in voting behaviour, public opinion and party politics in Turkey. He received his PhD in Political Science at the State University of New York-Binghamton in 1994. He is on the editorial board of the Turkish Studies and his publications appeared in the Democratization, European Journal of Political Research, Electoral Studies, Turkish Studies, New Perspectives on Turkey, South European Society and Politics, Middle Eastern Studies, Political Studies and in edited volumes. Professor Çarkoğlu published numerous articles on the mindset of Turkish voters and co-authored an important book on the rise of the AKP with Ersin Kalaycıoğlu that appeared from Palgrave: The Rising Tide of Conservatism in Turkey (2009).

The symposium will be held on April 15th at 15.30hrs at the VU University Amsterdam Campus: De Boelelaan 1085; W&N Building; Room WN-C623. Please see the VU website  for travel directions.

Brujula Electoral for the 2015 Spanish General Elections

Brujula Electoral for the 2015 Spanish General Elections

On Sunday, 20th December, general elections will be held in Spain. It is promised to be a very interesting competition where the two traditional parties (PP and PSOE) will have to fight with the newly emerging parties C’s and Podemos.

This nonpartisan voting advice application has been carefully developed by a team of prestigious academics and political scientists affiliated to numerous universities under the leadership of Ignacio Sanchez-Cuenca, director of the Institute of Social Sciences Carlos III-Juan March (IC3JM) with the only intention of informing the electorate and gather data that would help them in their scientific research. Kieskompas collaborates with numerous media-groups (Huffingtonpost, Vocento, Prensa Ibérica, Expansión, Infolibre,…) to promote the Spanish Election Compass The user data analysis provided by Kieskompas have been largely published on these media outlets during the campaign.



Dutch University and Election Compass organise a 3-day training in Data-Driven journalism

After last year’s successful training, Election Compass (Kieskompas) and VU University Amsterdam, with the support of the Embassy of the Netherlands in Egypt, are organising another comprehensive, in-depth training in Data-driven journalism.

The main goal is to improve the skills of journalists in using public opinion data for innovative types of media-productions, in which the narrative is supported by state-of-the-art graphics and other visual representations that show what voters think about important issues.

During a three-day training at the Netherlands-Flemish Institute in Cairo (NVIC) from November 9 to 11, the participating journalists will learn the ins and outs of data-driven journalism. Data-driven journalism aims to give more insight in the events happening around us, by putting events into their context and relating them to other events and trends. Thus, instead of ‘being the first to report on a single event’, data-driven journalism emphasises linking several events to reveal the deeper laying structures and developments.

The extensive programme is developed by Kieskompas in collaboration with Egyptian academics, among others Magued Osman (CEO and director of Baseera, the Egyptian Centre for Public Opinion) and Dr. Rasha Abdulla (Associate Professor and Past Chair of Journalism and Mass Communication at the American University in Cairo). The programme will cover many different aspects of how to report on elections and current political events and offer an in-depth overview of the current Egyptian elections. The goal is to create high quality news content. The journalists will be trained in interpreting and visualising complex data and using information tools to visualise the complex world around us. The training will deepen their understanding of politics and elections in Egypt, as well as the use of new social media in reporting.

By organising this training, Kieskompas also aims to strengthen the ties between journalist and academics. Academics and journalists can complement each other: academics can help acquire data and journalists can help the academics to reach a broader audience. Data driven journalism will not replace traditional journalism, but helps journalists to take media coverage of elections to a higher level, making it more interactive and more visual.

Election compass contributed to EU report on E-democracy

Dr André Krouwel, University Lecturer of Comparative Politics and Communication at Vrije Universiteit in the Netherlands and Academic Director of Kieskompas (Election Compass), contributed to the preparation of an EU report on E-democracy tools and political information and participation.

The relationship between elected representatives and citizens, civil society and political authorities is evolving. While traditional linkages between citizens and politicians are weakening, e-media, including Internet and social media sites, can help mobilise voters and increase citizen participation in new and different ways to reinforce the legitimacy of elected representatives.

This report examines the impact of the increasing use of e-media on the work of political representatives at local and regional levels. It examines ‘good practices’ that show how e-media can help to improve the political involvement, interest and knowledge of citizens and enhance their participation, as well as ways in which new technologies can help citizens contribute to policy making. The aim is to analyse the changes, opportunities and challenges that IT-usage can bring.

However, there are also hurdles to overcome including the risk that not all opinions are taken into account, that political debate using e-media is not always balanced and that generated data is not secure and that in some case the privacy of participants is not guaranteed.

Click here for the report:

Turkish General Elections 2015

Turkish General Elections 2015

In collaboration with with Koc University Istanbul, Election Compass (Kieskompas) developed the 4th application to help Turkish voters to find the party closest to their own preferences. A new feature is that we ask voters how important each issue is for them in this election. This allows us to analyse the salience of the different issues and their effect on the party choice. The 2015 Oy Pusulasi again provides the Turkish electorate with a clear and transparency overview of party positions on 30 salient issues for the upcoming Turkish Elections on November 1. New elections were necessary as no government could be formed in the polarised politics in Turkey after the elections in June this year. Due to the refugee crisis on the border with Syria and tensions between the Kurdish minority and the Turkish majority population also play an important role.


Bussola Eleitoral for the Portuguese electorate

Bussola Eleitoral for the Portuguese electorate

On the 4th of October, the citizens of Portugal voted for a new parliament. During the campaign period prior to these election, Election compass, affiliated to the VU, developed the Bussola Eleitoral for the Portuguese electorate together with Portuguese scientists.

The Portuguese election compass is online at:

Elections amid economic uncertainty 

The Portuguese elections are held during a prolonged period of economic uncertainty and crisis. The most important issues for the Portuguese electorate are unemployment, austerity measures and the economic crisis in general. The political parties in Portugal have different stances on how to handle the economic crisis; either by cutting social security measures or raising taxes to be able to invest.

Election Compass shows the most relevant issues

In the Election Compass developed for Portugal, voters get to answer 30 statements based on the most important election themes. These statements place the voters in the political spectrum where all parties are also places. This placements enables users to see which parties they are closest to them in the spectrum. It is also possible to view each statement and position of each party in detail.

Research with our Portuguese colleagues

As in all other countries Election Compass worked together with reputable scientists. Marina Costa Lobo from the University of Lissabon was lead of the academic team and which will research on how the Portuguese electorate feel about economic issues in Portugal. The research aims to find out how angry, worries or optimistic Portuguese votes are about the economic crisis.  Media partners have also been part of this project to inform the public on important developments and issues based on the input from Bussola Eleitoral users.

Election Compass UK 2015

On Thursday, May 7, elections for a new parliament will be held in the United Kingdom. It promises to be a very close race between the Conservatives of Prime Minister Cameron and the Labour Party led by Ed Milliband. The Conservatives are facing fierce competition from UKIP, while Labour leader Milliband is criticised for his lack of popular appeal.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 12.14.50

Currently, the most controversial issues are related to immigration and EU membership, but also ways in which to solve the economic crisis are in the heads of many voters. For example, higher taxation on the more wealthy Britons deeply divides the electorate.

Kieskompas collaborates with media-organisation Local World to promote the UK Election Compass Local World is one of the largest publishers/regional printed newspapers in the United Kingdom, with over 100 newspapers and more than 70 news websites.

The user data analysis provided by Kieskompas have been published  produced on Local World outlets during the campaign.

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Example of user data analysis by Kieskompas


Rejecting europe: conference on negative attitudes towards European Integration

Kieskompas (Election Compass) is proud to present the upcoming symposium entitled “Rejecting Europe or Worried about the crisis? Explaining negative attitudes and sentiments towards European integration.” At the seminar, on 8 and 9 November, a large number of distinguished scientists will delve deeper into the causes and structure of discontent with the process of European integration.

In the last European election a large number of Eurosceptic representatives have been elected to European parliament, some of which are totally hostile to European integration. Are these negative sentiments and attitudes caused by the ongoing economic crisis, or are there other underlying explanations for this rejection of the process of European integration?

As a follow-up to collecting voter opinion data during the last European elections, Kieskompas offers scientists the opportunity to discuss how popular attitudes and sentiments towards the EU have played a role in the minds of voters when they cast their vote, or stayed at home.

Academics from across the continent are brought together to present their first research results on the mindset of different voter groups. The seminar will not only aim to increase academic knowledge, but also to facilitate new concrete initiatives in EU member states to connect citizens to national and European political structures.

This seminar is funded by Open Society Foundations. The OSF works to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens

Launch of new European research project Voteadvice

On November 6 and 7, Kieskompas (Election Compass), embedded in the VU University, organises the ‘kick-off’ conference and the first training event for the VOTEADVICE training network.

VOTEADVICE is a Marie Curie funded research-training network, a partnership between Kieskompas, the University of Exeter (United Kingdom), Koç University (Istanbul, Turkey) and a host of other universities across Europe.

Kieskompas (Election Compass) has developed to a global player in developing online applications that help voters pick the party that best represents their own opinions during election campaigns. These online platforms have become important resources of academic information and experimentation to delve deeper in voting behaviour and party competition. Over the next few years, the VOTEADVICE team will develop several online experiments to broaden and deepen our knowledge on how voters make the important decision on whom to vote for.

The project analyses the impact of vote advice applications – which matcher voters opinions with formal party positions – and explores the uses and quality of voluntary online surveys. During the kick-off workshop and training, data challenges and online experiments will be discussed and researchers will present their findings.

The workshop will take place at the Faculty of Social Sciences, VU University Amsterdam.