Rural Mayors

The Transformations of Electoral Campaign Lists and Registers of Political Legitimacy in Rural Areas
By Sébastien Vignon


If the methods used during election campaigns of rural mayors in France differ from those of big cities, periurbanization has modified their way of running for mayoralties. A survey conducted in Picardy during the 2014 mayoralties showed that candidates have been led to progressively adopt new modes of action in their strategies. Indeed, in rural areas, the gradual depreciation of candidates’ door to door visits goes along with a shift in the types of mayoral legitimacy. Today, candidates must combine proximity to their potential constituents with managerial fairness, while avoiding any biased attitude. These moves which are taking place at various rhythms and intensity are the results of a change in the social profile of the different populations and that of contenders running for mayoralty/local government.
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