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Bicameralism and Government Formation

  • Diermeier, Daniel
  • Eraslan, H�lya
  • Merlo, Antonio

In this paper we present a structural approach to the study of government formation in multi-party parliamentary democracies. The approach is based on the estimation of a stochastic bargaining model which we use to investigate the effects of specific institutional features of parliamentary democracy on the formation and stability of coalition governments. We then apply our methodology to estimate the effects of governmental bicameralism. Our main findings are that eliminating bicameralism does not affect government durability, but does have a significant effect on the composition of governments leading to smaller coalitions. These results are due to an equilibrium replacement effect: removing bicameralism affects the relative durability of coalitions of different sizes which in turn induces changes in the coalitions that are chosen in equilibrium.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1561/100.00005004
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Article provided by now publishers in its journal Quarterly Journal of Political Science.

Volume (Year): 2 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 227-252

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Handle: RePEc:now:jlqjps:100.00005004
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.nowpublishers.com/

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  1. Merlo, Antonio, 1996. "Bargaining over governments in a stochastic environment," Bulletins 7476, University of Minnesota, Economic Development Center.
  2. Rust, John, 1987. "Optimal Replacement of GMC Bus Engines: An Empirical Model of Harold Zurcher," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(5), pages 999-1033, September.
  3. Antonio Merlo, 1998. "Economic Dynamics And Government Stability In Postwar Italy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 629-637, November.
  4. Roger B. Myerson & Daniel Diermeier, 1999. "Bicameralism and Its Consequences for the Internal Organization of Legislatures," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1182-1196, December.
  5. Diermeier, Daniel & Merlo, Antonio, 2000. "Government Turnover in Parliamentary Democracies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 46-79, September.
  6. Antonio Merlo & Charles Wilson, 1997. "Efficient delays in a stochastic model of bargaining," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 39-55.
  7. Merlo, Antonio & Wilson, Charles A, 1995. "A Stochastic Model of Sequential Bargaining with Complete Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(2), pages 371-99, March.
  8. Daniel Diermeier & Hulya Eraslan & Antonio Merlo, 2003. "A Structural Model of Government Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(1), pages 27-70, January.
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