Iceland - Political parties

Party descriptions and CMP left-right scores
Party Type 91 95 99 03 Average
SF Social Democratic -12.4 -19.6 -19.4 -19.4 -17.7
SSF Conservative 47 10.3 18.2 18.2 23.4
VG Ecologist -15.6 -24.6 -32.5 -32.5 -26.3
FSF Agrarian 42.2 -21.1 -9.8 -9.8 0.4
FF Liberal 5.5 5.5 5.5

The table shows the periodical scores on left-right position as given in the Comparative Manifesto Project (Volkens, Andrea,, 2010). The scores range from -100 (left) to +100 (right).

Type: Tentative grouping of political parties and alliances based on information provided in the Comparative Manifesto Project and from party descriptions in Europa World Yearbook, Encyclopædia Britannica and in election reports from the European Journal of Political Research and/or Electoral Studies.

SF - The Social Democratic Alliance (the Alliance) - (Samfylkingin)

A social democratic alliance established in the run-up to the 1999 election following a merger of four left-wing parties: the Social Democratic Party (Alþýðuflokkurinn); the Peoples Alliance (Alþýðubandalagið); the Woment’s Alliance (Samtök um kvennalista); and the National Movement (Þjóðvaki). The parties formally merged in 2000. After the 2009 election it is the biggest party in the Icelandic Parliament. In the above table, note that the CMP scores for 1991-1995 are for the Social Democratic Party only.

SSF - Independence Party - (Sjálfstæðisflokkurinn)

Founded in 1929 as a merger of the Conservative Party and the Liberal Party. It is today a centre-right party. The party is against Icelandic NATO membership and in favour of EU membership.

VG - Left-Green Movement - (Vinstrihreyfingin - grænt framboð)

Founded in 1999 by a minority of the Peoples Alliance (Alþýðubandalagið) that did not approve of the merger of the leftist parties in what became the (Social Democratic) Alliance. VG Focuses on socialistic values and environmentalism, and are sceptical of market economy and Western co-operation. In the above table, note that the CMP scores for 1991-1995 are for the Peoples Alliance only.

FSF - Progressive Party - (Framsóknarflokkurinn)

Founded in 1916 as a merger between two agrarian parties. While still drawing support from farmers and fishermen, the FSF has increasingly acknowledged liberal ideas and is a member of the Liberal International. The party has traditionally been the second largest party, and it has co-operated with both rightist and leftist parties in government.

BH - Citizens' Movement - (Borgarahreyfingin)

Founded by a number of grassroots movements in the lead up to the 2009 election, as a response to the global recession, which hit Iceland particularly hard.

FF - Liberal Party - (Frjálslyndi flokkurinn)

Social liberal party founded in 1998 (split from the SSF) in opposition to the exsting system of fisheries management.

LH - Democracy Movement - (Lýðræðishreyfingin)

In the 2009 Icelandic parliamentary election it received 0.6% of the vote and is thus the second largest party that is not represented in the parliament.


Political Organizations (Iceland). 2009. In Europa World online. London, Routledge. University of Bergen. Retrieved October 2009.

European Journal of Political Research (European Consortium for Political Research), reports on Iceland.

Budge, I.; Klingemann, H.-D.; Volkens, A.; Bara, J.; Tanenbaum, E., with Fording, R.C.; Hearl, D.J.; Kim, H.M.; McDonald, M. and Mendez, S. (2001). Mapping Policy Preferences. Estimates for Parties, Electors, and Governments 1945-1998. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Klingemann, H.D.; Volkens, A.; Bara, J.; Budge, I.; McDonald, M. (2006). Mapping Policy Preferences II. Estimates for Parties, Electors, and Governments in Eastern Europe, the European Union and the OECD, 1990-2003. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Volkens, Andrea; Lacewell, Onawa; Regel, Sven; Schultze, Henrike; Werner, Annika (2010): The Manifesto Data Collection. Manifesto Project (MRG/CMP/MARPOR), Berlin: Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung (WZB):