Framing Effects in Political Decision Making: Evidence From a Natural Voting Experiment
AbstractThis paper analyzes a recent ballot in which two virtually identical popular initiatives, both demanding a decrease in the legal age of retirement in Switzerland, led to differences in approval rates of nearly seven percentage points. Based on this unique natural experiment, the existence of emphasis framing effects is tested for and their determinants are identified outside of the controlled settings of laboratories. Nonetheless, the analyzed setting allows for considerably more control than usually available in the field: All party, government and interest group recommendations were symmetric for both initiatives, and the simultaneous vote rules out potential variation of individual preferences and compositional changes of the electorate over time. Using community and individual level data it is shown that the difference in approval rates is largely due to the different emphases in the initiatives' titles.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6200.
Date of creation: Mar 2007
Date of revision:
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Other versions of this item:
- Monika Bütler & Michel André Maréchal, 2007. "Framing Effects in Political Decision Making: Evidence From a Natural Voting Experiment," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2007 2007-04, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
- Monika Buetler & Michel André Maréchal, 2007. "Framing Effects in Political Decision Making: Evidence from a Natural Voting Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 1940, CESifo Group Munich.
- D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-03-31 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2007-03-31 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-EXP-2007-03-31 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-PBE-2007-03-31 (Public Economics)
- NEP-POL-2007-03-31 (Positive Political Economics)
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