Votes and Violence: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Nigeria
Following the wave of democratization during the 1990s, elections are now common in low-income societies.� However, these elections are frequently flawed.� We investigate the Nigerian general election of 2007, which is to date the largest election held in Africa and one seriously marred by violence.� We designed and conducted a nationwide field experiment based on randomized anti-violence grassroots campaigning.� We find direct effects on violence outcomes from exploring both subject-surveying and independent data sources.� Crucially, we establish that voter intimidation is effective in reducing voter turnout, and that the violence was systematically dissociated from incumbents.� We suggest that incumbents have a comparative advantage in alternative strategies, vote buying and ballot fraud.� Voter intimidation may be a strategy of the weak analogous to terrorism.
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Volume (Year): 124 (2014)
Issue (Month): 574 (02)
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