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Anatomy of Voting Behaviour and Attitudes During Post-Communist Transition Czech Republic 1990-98

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  • Doyle, Orla
  • Fidrmuc, Jan

Abstract

How does implementing harsh economic reforms influence voting behaviour? And how do the patterns of political support change over the course of transition? We analyse these issues using data from a sequence of 11 opinion surveys conducted in the Czech Republic between 1990-98. We find that - while voters’ ideological position and some socio-economic characteristics, such as age and education - tend to have a stable impact on voting behaviour over time, economic outcomes, such as employment status, income and unemployment, only affect political preferences in the later stages of the transition. This is consistent with the predictions of the theoretical literature on political constraints during transition – as the uncertainty about reform’s outcomes dissipates, constituencies of winners and losers emerge. The winners are the young, educated, high-wage earners and workers employed in de novo private firms. The losers, on the other hand, are the elderly, low-skilled and low-wage workers and the unemployed. The balance between these two constituencies then determines the support for reform-minded and left-wing parties at election time.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 3801.

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Date of creation: Feb 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3801

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Keywords: political constraints; political support; transition; voting;

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References

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  1. John E. Jackson & Jacek Klich & Krystyna Poznanska, 2001. "Economic Transition and Elections in Poland," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 391, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  2. Dewatripont, Mathias & Roland, Gérard, 1993. "The Design of Reform Packages Under Uncertainty," CEPR Discussion Papers 860, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Rodrik, Dani, 1995. "The Dynamics of Political Support for Reform in Economies in Transition," CEPR Discussion Papers 1115, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Jordahl, Henrik, 2002. "An Economic Analysis of Voting in Sweden," Ratio Working Papers 16, The Ratio Institute.
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  6. Fidrmuc, Jan, 2000. "Political support for reforms: Economics of voting in transition countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(8), pages 1491-1513, August.
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  8. Fernandez, Raquel & Rodrik, Dani, 1991. "Resistance to Reform: Status Quo Bias in the Presence of Individual-Specific Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1146-55, December.
  9. G�rard Roland, 2002. "The Political Economy of Transition," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(1), pages 29-50, Winter.
  10. Robert S. Chase, 1998. "Markets for communist human capital: Returns to education and experience in the Czech republic and Slovakia," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(3), pages 401-423, April.
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  12. Brainerd, Elizabeth, 1998. "Winners and Losers in Russia's Economic Transition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1094-1116, December.
  13. Nannestad, Peter & Paldam, Martin, 1994. " The VP-Function: A Survey of the Literature on Vote and Popularity Functions after 25 Years," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 79(3-4), pages 213-45, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Neher, Frank, 2011. "Markets wanted: Expectation overshooting in transition," Discussion Papers 2011/1, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
  2. Doyle, Orla & Fidrmuc, Jan, 2004. "Who is in favor of enlargement? Determinants of support for EU membership in the candidate countries' referenda," ZEI Working Papers B 04-2004, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
  3. Valev, Neven, 2004. "No pain, no gain: market reform, unemployment, and politics in Bulgaria," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 409-425, September.
  4. Rovelli, Riccardo & Zaiceva, Anzelika, 2009. "Transition Fatigue? Cross-Country Evidence from Micro Data," IZA Discussion Papers 4224, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Frank Neher, 2013. "Markets wanted: expectation overshooting in transition economies," International Review of Economics, Springer, vol. 60(2), pages 187-219, June.

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