Is voting skin-deep? Estimating the effect of candidate ballot photographs on election outcomes
In the Northern Territory, Australia, ballot papers for territory elections depict candidates' photographs. We exploit this unusual electoral feature by looking at the effect that candidates' beauty and skin color has on voting patterns. Our results for beauty are mixed, but we find strong evidence that skin color matters. In electorates with a small Indigenous population, lighter-skinned candidates receive more votes, while in electorates with a high number of Indigenous people, darker-skinned candidates are rewarded at the ballot box. The relationship between skin color and electoral performance is stronger for challengers than incumbents. We explain this with a model in which voters use skin color as a proxy for some underlying characteristic which they value only to the extent that they share the trait.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Berggren, Niclas & Jordahl, Henrik & Poutvaara, Panu, 2006.
"The Looks of a Winner: Beauty, Gender and Electoral Success,"
Ratio Working Papers
104, The Ratio Institute.
- Berggren, Niclas & Jordahl, Henrik & Poutvaara, Panu, 2006. "The Looks of a Winner: Beauty, Gender and Electoral Success," Working Paper Series 671, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
- Berggren, Niclas & Jordahl, Henrik & Poutvaara, Panu, 2006. "The Looks of a Winner: Beauty, Gender and Electoral Success," IZA Discussion Papers 2311, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Niclas Berggren & Henrik Jordahl & Panu Poutvaara, 2007. "The Looks of a Winner: Beauty, Gender, and Electoral Success," CESifo Working Paper Series 2002, CESifo Group Munich.
- Price, Joseph & Wolfers, Justin, 2007.
"Racial Discrimination Among NBA Referees,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
6369, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Price, Joseph & Wolfers, Justin, 2007. "Racial Discrimination Among NBA Referees," IZA Discussion Papers 2863, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Joseph Price & Justin Wolfers, 2007. "Racial Discrimination Among NBA Referees," NBER Working Papers 13206, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kate Antonovics & Brian G. Knight, 2009.
"A New Look at Racial Profiling: Evidence from the Boston Police Department,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 163-177, February.
- Kate L. Antonovics & Brian G. Knight, 2004. "A New Look at Racial Profiling: Evidence from the Boston Police Department," NBER Working Papers 10634, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- John G. Matsusaka, 2005. "Direct Democracy Works," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 185-206, Spring.
- Donohue, John J, III & Levitt, Steven D, 2001. "The Impact of Race on Policing and Arrests," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 44(2), pages 367-94, October.
- Joni Hersch, 2006. "Skin-Tone Effects among African Americans: Perceptions and Reality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 251-255, May.
- Bryan Caplan, 2007.
"Introduction to The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies
[The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies]," Introductory Chapters, Princeton University Press.
- Amy King & Andrew Leigh, 2009.
CEPR Discussion Papers
616, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
- Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2005.
"Changing Looks and Changing "Discrimination:" The Beauty of Economists,"
NBER Working Papers
11712, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hamermesh, Daniel S., 2006. "Changing looks and changing "discrimination": The beauty of economists," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 93(3), pages 405-412, December.
- Michael A. Stoll & Steven Raphael & Harry J. Holzer, 2004. "Black job applicants and the hiring officer's race," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 57(2), pages 267-287, January.
- Arthur H. Goldsmith & Darrick Hamilton & William Darity, Jr, 2007. "From Dark to Light: Skin Color and Wages Among African-Americans," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(4).
- Arthur H. Goldsmith & Darrick Hamilton & William Darity Jr, 2006. "Shades of Discrimination: Skin Tone and Wages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 242-245, May.
- Joni Hersch, 2008. "Profiling the New Immigrant Worker: The Effects of Skin Color and Height," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 345-386, 04.
- Mason, Patrick L., 2004. "Annual income, hourly wages, and identity Among Mexican Americans and other Latinos," MPRA Paper 11326, University Library of Munich, Germany.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:30:y:2009:i:1:p:61-70. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.