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Bogotá: the collapse of a political machine

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  • Rafael Santos

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Abstract

In Bogotá the 1991 reforms obstructed a market for votes. Clientelism lost itseffectiveness; citizens developed a vote of opinion and the city showed an outstanding performance in the provision of public goods and social services. This story is illustrated with a novel panel data at the neighborhood voting precinct level from 1988 to 2003. An interesting episode exposes the changing class preferentes of Bogotá citizens for each of its mayors. However, the main result is the structural break caused by the reforms. Prior to 1991, the areas with the most exposure to clientelism generated a greater percentage of votes for traditional parties and obtained a greater coverage of social services; since 1991, both relationships are no longer true. A political machine collapses.

Suggested Citation

  • Rafael Santos, 2007. "Bogotá: the collapse of a political machine," DOCUMENTOS CEDE 004011, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  • Handle: RePEc:col:000089:004011
    as

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    File URL: http://economia.uniandes.edu.co/publicaciones/documentocede2007-15.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Miguel Urrutia, 1991. "On the Absence of Economic Populism in Colombia," NBER Chapters,in: The Macroeconomics of Populism in Latin America, pages 369-391 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Allan Drazen & Marcela Eslava, 2005. "Electoral Manipulation via Expenditure Composition: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 11085, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Eslava, Marcela, 2006. "Ciclos políticos de la política fiscal con votantes opuestos al déficit. El caso colombiano," El Trimestre Económico, Fondo de Cultura Económica, vol. 0(290), pages 289-336, abril-jun.
    4. Dutta, Jayasri & Morris, Stephen, 1997. "The Revelation of Information and Self-Fulfilling Beliefs," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, pages 231-244.
    5. Nicola Persico & Alessandro Lizzeri, 2001. "The Provision of Public Goods under Alternative Electoral Incentives," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 225-239, March.
    6. Leonard Wantchekon, 2003. "Clientelism and voting behavior: Evidence from a field experiment in benin," Natural Field Experiments 00339, The Field Experiments Website.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. The Looting of Bogotá
      by Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson in Why Nations Fail on 2013-05-10 20:22:00

    More about this item

    Keywords

    political institutions; institutional change; elections; clientelism; votebuying; public policies; Bogotá;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H72 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Budget and Expenditures

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