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Optimum Electoral Areas


  • Sapir, André
  • Sekkat, Khalid


The paper lies at the intersection between the literature on macroeconomics and politics and the literature on coordination. It uses models of political business cycles in an open economy setting to investigate the costs and benefits of forming electoral areas, i.e. regions where countries share the same electoral calendar. Both opportunistic and partisan models are considered. The main finding of the paper is that the desirability of an electoral area between two countries is enhanced when the spillovers between these countries are large and positive, and when they face symmetric shocks (or are of comparable size). Hence, if a group of countries constitutes an optimum currency area it is also likely to be an optimum electoral area.

Suggested Citation

  • Sapir, André & Sekkat, Khalid, 1995. "Optimum Electoral Areas," CEPR Discussion Papers 1290, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1290

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    More about this item


    International Policy Coordination; Political Business Cycles;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission


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