IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/pubcho/v129y2006i3p435-460.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Do elections lead to informed public decisions?

Author

Listed:
  • Otto Swank
  • Bauke Visser

    ()

Abstract

Democracies delegate substantial decision power to politicians. We analyse a model in which the electorate wants an office-motivated incumbent to design, examine and implement public policies. We show that voters can always encourage politicians to design projects. However, they cannot always induce politicians to examine projects. In fact, politicians who would examine policies without elections, say because of a concern about the public interest, may shy away from policy examination with elections. Copyright Springer Science + business Media B.V. 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Otto Swank & Bauke Visser, 2006. "Do elections lead to informed public decisions?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 435-460, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:129:y:2006:i:3:p:435-460
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-006-9065-5
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11127-006-9065-5
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Torsten Persson & Gérard Roland & Guido Tabellini, 1997. "Separation of Powers and Political Accountability," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1163-1202.
    2. Timothy Besley, 2005. "Political Selection," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 43-60, Summer.
    3. Hans Gersbach, 2004. "Competition of Politicians for Incentive Contracts and Elections," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 121(1), pages 157-177, October.
    4. Elhanan Helpman & Gene M. Grossman, 1999. "Competing for Endorsements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 501-524, June.
    5. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
    6. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1990. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 21-36, March.
    7. Robert Barro, 1973. "The control of politicians: An economic model," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 19-42, March.
    8. Ben Lockwood & Eric Le Borgne, 2003. "Do Elections Always Motivate Incumbents? Experimentation vs. Career Concerns," IMF Working Papers 03/57, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Lupia, Arthur & McCubbins, Mathew D, 1994. "Learning from Oversight: Fire Alarms and Police Patrols Reconstructed," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(1), pages 96-125, April.
    10. Joseph Stiglitz, 1998. "Distinguished Lecture on Economics in Government: The Private Uses of Public Interests: Incentives and Institutions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 3-22, Spring.
    11. Frey, Bruno S & Oberholzer-Gee, Felix & Eichenberger, Reiner, 1996. "The Old Lady Visits Your Backyard: A Tale of Morals and Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(6), pages 1297-1313, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Silvia Dominguez-Martinez & Otto Swank, 2006. "Polarization, Information Collection and Electoral Control," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 26(3), pages 527-545, June.
    2. Enrico Giovannini, 2008. "Statistics and Politics in a “Knowledge Society”," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 86(2), pages 177-200, April.
    3. Mejía Cubillos, Javier, 2012. "Libertad y desempeño económico
      [Freedom and economic performance]
      ," MPRA Paper 37939, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Eric Borgne & Ben Lockwood, 2006. "Do Elections Always Motivate Incumbents? Learning vs. Re-Election Concerns," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 129(1), pages 41-60, October.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Democracy; Policy examination; Multiple tasks; Information; Elections;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D78 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Positive Analysis of Policy Formulation and Implementation
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:129:y:2006:i:3:p:435-460. 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: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.