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Political Competition And Politician Quality: Evidence From Italian Municipalities

  • Maria De Paola

    ()

  • Vincenzo Scoppa

    ()

    (Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica, Università della Calabria)

In this paper, using data from Italian local level governments for the years 1985- 2008, we investigate whether political competition affects the quality of elected politicians, as measured by using some ex-ante characteristics such as educational level and type of job held. We handle endogeneity problems through an instrumental variable approach using a variable which takes into account whether the previous legislature survived until the end of its legislative term as an instrument for political competition. Early termination increases political competition, without directly affecting the quality of candidates. Two Stage Least Square estimates support the assumption that political competition positively affects politician quality. Results are robust to different measures of political competition and to different specifications of the model.

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File URL: http://www.ecostat.unical.it/RePEc/WorkingPapers/WP05_2010.pdf
File Function: First version, 2010-02
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Paper provided by Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica) in its series Working Papers with number 201005.

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Length: 14 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:clb:wpaper:201005
Contact details of provider: Postal: Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza, Ponte Pietro Bucci, Cubo 0/C, I-87036 Arcavacata di Rende, CS, Italy
Phone: +39 0984 492413
Fax: +39 0984 492421
Web page: http://www.unical.it/portale/strutture/dipartimenti_240/disesf/

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  1. Johannes Becker & Andreas Peichl & Johannes Rincke, 2009. "Politicians’ outside earnings and electoral competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 140(3), pages 379-394, September.
  2. Matthias Messner & Mattias Polborn, 2003. "Paying Politicians," Working Papers 246, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  3. Timothy Besley, 2004. "Joseph Schumpeter Lecture: Paying Politicians: Theory and Evidence," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 193-215, 04/05.
  4. Kiss, Áron, 2009. "Coalition politics and accountability
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  5. Kiss, Áron, 2012. "Divisive politics and accountability," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 208-214.
  6. Timothy Besley & Torsten Persson & Daniel M. Sturm, 2010. "Political Competition, Policy and Growth: Theory and Evidence from the United States," CEP Discussion Papers dp1009, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. Costa-I-Font, Joan & Rodriguez-Oreggia, Eduardo & Lunapla, Dario, 2003. " Political Competition and Pork-Barrel Politics in the Allocation of Public Investment in Mexico," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 116(1-2), pages 185-204, July.
  8. Fabio Padovano & Roberto Ricciuti, 2009. "Political competition and economic performance: evidence from the Italian regions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 138(3), pages 263-277, March.
  9. Vincenzo Galasso & Tommaso Nannicini, 2010. "Competing on Good Politicians," Working Papers 368, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  10. Silvia Ferrari & Francisco Cribari-Neto, 2004. "Beta Regression for Modelling Rates and Proportions," Journal of Applied Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(7), pages 799-815.
  11. Rogers, Diane Lim & Rogers, John H, 2000. " Political Competition and State Government Size: Do Tighter Elections Produce Looser Budgets?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 105(1-2), pages 1-21, October.
  12. Tim Besley & Ian Preston, 2007. "Electoral bias and policy choice: theory and evidence," IFS Working Papers W07/06, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  13. Wittman, Donald, 1989. "Why Democracies Produce Efficient Results," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1395-1424, December.
  14. Alessandro Lizzeri, 2000. "The Drawbacks of Electoral Competition," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0898, Econometric Society.
  15. Skilling, David & Zeckhauser, Richard J., 2002. "Political competition and debt trajectories in Japan and the OECD," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 121-135, April.
  16. Michele Polo, . "Electoral competition and political rents," Working Papers 144, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  17. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
  18. Antonio Merlo, 2005. "Whither Political Economy? Theories, Facts and Issues," PIER Working Paper Archive 05-033, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 01 Dec 2005.
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