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Is civic duty the solution to the paradox of voting?

Author

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  • Abel François

    () (University of Lille
    LIEPP, Sciences Po)

  • Olivier Gergaud

    () (KEDGE Business School
    LIEPP, Sciences Po)

Abstract

Although sense of civic duty is seen by many scholars as the most obvious solution to the paradox of voting, very few empirical studies provide clear evidence on that motive. We use blood donation to build proxies, focusing only on intrinsic motivations, and then introduce such measures into electoral turnout regressions. Our results show that civic duty has a strong influence on voter turnout rates, confirming that the satisfaction voters receive from voting matters regardless of election outcomes. The results are even stronger when we incorporate the number of plasma and platelet donations, which take more time and require stronger commitments from donors.

Suggested Citation

  • Abel François & Olivier Gergaud, 2019. "Is civic duty the solution to the paradox of voting?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 180(3), pages 257-283, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:180:y:2019:i:3:d:10.1007_s11127-018-00635-7
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-018-00635-7
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    Cited by:

    1. Kenju Kamei & Louis Putterman & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2019. "Civic Engagement as a Second-Order Public Good: The Cooperative Underpinnings of the Accountable State," Discussion Papers 19-10, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
    2. Jeremy Clark & Abel François & Olivier Gergaud, 2020. "Electoral Turnout and Social Capital," Working Papers in Economics 20/13, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
    3. Alberto Grillo, 2020. "Ethical Voting in Heterogenous Groups," Working Papers halshs-02962464, HAL.
    4. Andrea Bonoldi & Chiara Dalle Nogare & Martin Mosler & Niklas Potrafke, 2020. "Do inheritance rules affect voter turnout? Evidence from an Alpine region," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 395-445, December.
    5. Stephen J. Ferris & Marcel-Cristian Voia, 2020. "What aggregate data can tell us about voter turnout in Canada; did changes in the distribution of income matter?," Carleton Economic Papers 20-18, Carleton University, Department of Economics.
    6. Gaebler, Stefanie & Potrafke, Niklas & Roesel, Felix, 2020. "Compulsory voting and political participation: Empirical evidence from Austria," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(C).
    7. Alberto Grillo, 2020. "Ethical Voting in Heterogenous Groups," AMSE Working Papers 2034, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, France, revised Apr 2021.
    8. Schreiner, Nicolas, 2021. "Changes in Well-Being Around Elections," Working papers 2021/03, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.

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