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Interpersonal Influence Regarding the Decision to Vote Within Mozambican Households

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  • Ana Sílvia de Matos Vaz
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    Abstract

    Voter education is crucial to promote voters’ participation. The question that remains is how voter education campaigns can reach a significant part of the population. During the 2009 Mozambican elections, a field experiment implemented three voter education interventions: the distribution of a free newspaper, the creation of a SMS hotline to report electoral problems, and a civic education campaign. Based on a sample of untreated individuals living with experimental subjects, this paper examines the diffusion of the interventions’ effects within the household. I find different spillover effects associated with different interventions and interpret that as evidence that different interventions trigger influence at different levels. I find that the delivery of the newspaper has almost no effect on the other people in the household. The hotline intervention affects the preferences and behavior of the other individuals, but not their information. Finally, the civic education campaign only affects the behavior of other people in the household. This paper shows that the transmission of voter education campaigns’ effects does not occur through information sharing, but through sharing of opinions and pressure. Furthermore, this study provides statistical evidence that social control increases voter turnout.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford in its series CSAE Working Paper Series with number 2012-14.

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    Date of creation: 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2012-14

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    1. Marcel Fafchamps & Pedro C Vicente, 2009. "Political Violence and Social Networks: Experimental Evidence from a Nigerian Election," CSAE Working Paper Series 2009-14, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    2. Paul Collier & Pedro C. Vicente, 2008. "Votes and Violence: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Nigeria," HiCN Working Papers 50, Households in Conflict Network.
    3. Arthur, W. Brian & Lane, David A., 1993. "Information contagion," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 81-104, June.
    4. James W. Hardin, 2002. "The robust variance estimator for two-stage models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 2(3), pages 253-266, August.
    5. Pedro C. Vicente & Leonard Wantchekon, 2009. "Clientelism and vote buying: lessons from field experiments in African elections," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 25(2), pages 292-305, Summer.
    6. George A. Akerlof, 1997. "Social Distance and Social Decisions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1005-1028, September.
    7. Gine, Xavier & Mansuri, Ghazala, 2011. "Together we will : experimental evidence on female voting behavior in Pakistan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5692, The World Bank.
    8. Arne Risa Hole, 2006. "Calculating Murphy-Topel variance estimates in Stata: A simplified procedure," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 6(4), pages 521-529, December.
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