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Determinants of Direct Democracy

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  • Nadia Fiorino
  • Roberto Ricciuti

Abstract

This paper investigates on the demographic, economic, political and cultural determinants of direct democracy in 87 countries using an index of direct democracy. The test is interesting since there are important variations across these countries in the referendum and initiative use. We apply a number of estimation techniques. We find that per capita income, education and a larger share of Catholic population are positive determinants, whereas ethnic fractionalization is depending on the estimation technique. Political rights and stability also work as prerequisites to direct democracy. Direct democracy seems independent from the institutional structure.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2007/wp-cesifo-2007-06/cesifo1_wp2035.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2035.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2035

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Keywords: direct democracy; comparative politics; referendum;

References

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  1. Simeon Djankov & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andre Shleifer, 2000. "The Regulation of Entry," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1904, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  2. Blomberg, S.B. & Hess, G.D., 1999. "The Impact of Voter Initiatives on Economic Activity," Papers, Wellesley College - Department of Economics 99-11, Wellesley College - Department of Economics.
  3. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 2006. "Democracy and Development: The Devil in the Details," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000001139, UCLA Department of Economics.
  4. Philippe Aghion & Albero Alesina & Francesco Trebbi, 2002. "Endogenous Political Institutions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1957, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  5. Feld, Lars P. & Matsusaka, John G., 2003. "Budget referendums and government spending: evidence from Swiss cantons," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2703-2724, December.
  6. Frey, Bruno S & Kucher, Marcel & Stutzer, Alois, 2001. " Outcome, Process and Power in Direct Democracy: New Econometric Results," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 107(3-4), pages 271-93, June.
  7. Matsusaka, John G & McCarty, Nolan M, 2001. "Political Resource Allocation: Benefits and Costs of Voter Initiatives," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 413-48, October.
  8. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson & Pierre Yared, 2005. "Income and Democracy," NBER Working Papers 11205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Feld, Lars P & Savioz, Marcel R, 1997. "Direct Democracy Matters for Economic Performance: An Empirical Investigation," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 507-38.
  10. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Legal Origins," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1193-1229, November.
  11. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-79, April.
  12. Edward Glaeser & Giacomo Ponzetto & Andrei Shleifer, 2006. "Why Does Democracy Need Education?," NBER Working Papers 12128, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Mauro, Paolo, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712, August.
  14. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Cristian Pop-Eleches & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Judicial Checks and Balances," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 445-470, April.
  15. John G. Matsusaka, 2005. "Direct Democracy Works," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 185-206, Spring.
  16. Adam Przeworski & Fernando Limongi, 1993. "Political Regimes and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 51-69, Summer.
  17. Robert J. Barro, 1999. "Determinants of Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages S158-S183, December.
  18. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 587-623, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Lawrence Blume & Jens Müller & Stefan Voigt, 2007. "The Economic Effects of Direct Democracy – A First Global Assessment," CESifo Working Paper Series 2149, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Désirée Teobaldelli & Friedrich Schneider, 2013. "The influence of direct democracy on the shadow economy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(3), pages 543-567, December.
  3. Friedrich Schneider & Désirée Teobaldelli, 2012. "Beyond the Veil of Ignorance: The Influence of Direct Democracy on the Shadow Economy," CESifo Working Paper Series 3749, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Lorenz Blume & Stefan Voigt, 2012. "Institutional details matter—more economic effects of direct democracy," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 287-310, December.

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