Southern Europe has been at the heart of the European sovereign debt crisis and in the vanguard of the programmes of radical economic austerity implemented to confront it.
During the first two crisis years, the consequences for domestic political stability were dramatic.
Across the region, 2010-11 saw the overthrow of incumbent governments, the breaking down of established political affiliations and the emergence of new political actors.
The culmination was the simultaneous downfall of three South European governments in the space of eighteen days in November 2011.
This volume offers a collection of case studies of the twelve popular votes during this period in Italy, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriot community.
The contests include legislative, presidential and sub-national elections and a national-level referendum.
In our control case, Turkey, there was no economic crisis and no government change.
Elsewhere in Southern Europe, the studies indicate the progression of the crisis, from the limited disapproval of Berlusconi government registered in the Spring 2010 Italian regional election to the electoral collapse of the Spanish socialists in late 2011.
The volume indicates a build-up of popular frustration with the democratic process which can only be dangerous for the future of South European democracy. This book was published as a special issue of South European Society and Politics.