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Strength in Numbers: Group Size and Political Mobilization

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  • Oberholzer-Gee, Felix
  • Waldfogel, Joel

Abstract

An important result in interest group theory and political economy is that small groups are more influential than their size would lead us to expect. In this study, we document that the opposite holds for political mobilization. Citizens are more likely to participate in elections if they belong to large groups. We present evidence that both the absolute size of groups and their population share influence individual participation decisions. The link between group size and political mobilization is in part due to the structure of media markets. Candidates find it easier to direct campaign messages at larger groups because many existing media outlets cater to them.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Law and Economics.

Volume (Year): 48 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (April)
Pages: 73-91

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:y:2005:v:48:i:1:p:73-91

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Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JLE/

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Cited by:
  1. Pande, Rohini, 2007. "Understanding Political Corruption in Low Income Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 6273, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. C. Bush & Paul Zimmerman, 2010. "Media Mergers with Preference Externalities and Their Implications for Content Diversity, Consumer Welfare, and Policy," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 105-133, June.
  3. Sobbrio, Francesco & Navarra, Pietro, 2009. "Electoral Participation and Communicative Voting in Europe," MPRA Paper 18311, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Alessandro Olper & Johan F.M. Swinnen, 2009. "Mass Media and Public Policy:Global Evidence from Agricultural Policies," LICOS Discussion Papers 23209, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
  5. Sam Schulhofer-Wohl & Miguel Garrido, 2009. "Do Newspapers Matter? Short-run and Long-run Evidence from the Closure of The Cincinnati Post," NBER Working Papers 14817, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Kim, Iljoong & Kim, Inbae, 2008. "Interest group pressure explanations for the yen-dollar exchange rate movements: Focusing on the 1980s," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 364-382, September.
  7. Serguei Kaniovski & Dennis Mueller, 2006. "Community size, heterogeneity and voter turnouts," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 399-415, December.
  8. Allison Shertzer, 2013. "Immigrant Group Size and Political Mobilization: Evidence from European Migration to the United States," NBER Working Papers 18827, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. John Gilbert & Reza Oladi, 2011. "Net Campaign Contributions, Agricultural Interests, and Votes on Liberalizing Trade with China," Working Papers 2011-02, Utah State University, Department of Economics.
  10. Ignacio Lago & Sandra Bermúdez & Marc Guinjoan & Pablo Simón, 2014. "Turnout and fractionalization," Working Papers 1404, Universidade de Vigo, GEN - Governance and Economics research Network.
  11. Felix Oberholzer-Gee & Joel Waldfogel, 2009. "Media Markets and Localism: Does Local News en Español Boost Hispanic Voter Turnout?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 2120-28, December.
  12. Lisa M. George & Joel Waldfogel, 2006. "The New York Times and the Market for Local Newspapers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 435-447, March.
  13. Fernando Ferreira & Joel Waldfogel, 2010. "Pop Internationalism: Has A Half Century of World Music Trade Displaced Local Culture?," NBER Working Papers 15964, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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