Ministerial Weights and Government Formation: Estimation Using a Bargaining Model
This paper proposes a method to estimate relative ministerial weights in parliamentary democracies. Specifically, our method combines a bargaining model of government formation with maximum likelihood estimation. The data required for estimation are who formateurs are, what each partyâ€™s voting weight is, and what ministerial seats each party obtains. We use variation of the data and the structure of the bargaining model to recover ministerial weights and other parameters. Additionally, the method can measure the effects of voting weights and formateur advantage. We apply our proposed method to the case of Japan. Our results statistically show that political players value pork-related posts (such as the Minister of Construction) more than prestigious ones (such as the Minister of Foreign Affairs). We also find that there is a significant formateur advantage, while voting weights do not have a significant scale effect
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