IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ehu/ikerla/6417.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Turnout Intention and Social Networks

Author

Listed:
  • Fosco, Constanza
  • Laruelle, Annick
  • Sánchez, Angel

Abstract

How can networking affect the turnout in an election? We present a simple model to explain turnout as a result of a dynamic process of formation of the intention to vote within Erdös-Renyi random networks. Citizens have fixed preferences for one of two parties and are embedded in a given social network. They decide whether or not to vote on the basis of the attitude of their immediate contacts. They may simply follow the behavior of the majority (followers) or make an adaptive local calculus of voting (Downsian behavior). So they either have the intention of voting when the majority of their neighbors are willing to vote too, or they vote when they perceive in their social neighborhood that elections are "close". We study the long run average turnout, interpreted as the actual turnout observed in an election. Depending on the combination of values of the two key parameters, the average connectivity and the probability of behaving as a follower or in a Downsian fashion, the system exhibits monostability (zero turnout), bistability (zero turnout and either moderate or high turnout) or tristability (zero, moderate and high turnout). This means, in particular, that for a wide range of values of both parameters, we obtain realistic turnout rates, i.e. between 50% and 90%.

Suggested Citation

  • Fosco, Constanza & Laruelle, Annick & Sánchez, Angel, 2009. "Turnout Intention and Social Networks," IKERLANAK 2009-34, Universidad del País Vasco - Departamento de Fundamentos del Análisis Económico I.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehu:ikerla:6417
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://addi.ehu.es/handle/10810/6417
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Barry Nalebuff & Ron Shachar, 1999. "Follow the Leader: Theory and Evidence on Political Participation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 525-547, June.
    2. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Explaining Voter Turnout Patterns: An Information Theory," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 84(1-2), pages 91-117, July.
    3. Timothy J. Feddersen, 2004. "Rational Choice Theory and the Paradox of Not Voting," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(1), pages 99-112, Winter.
    4. repec:cup:apsrev:v:79:y:1985:i:01:p:62-78_22 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135-135.
    6. Matsusaka, John G & Palda, Filip, 1993. "The Downsian Voter Meets the Ecological Fallacy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 77(4), pages 855-878, December.
    7. João Amaro de Matos & Pedro Barros, 2004. "Social Norms and the Paradox of Elections’ Turnout," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 121(1), pages 239-255, October.
    8. John Ledyard, 1984. "The pure theory of large two-candidate elections," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 7-41, January.
    9. repec:cup:apsrev:v:62:y:1968:i:01:p:25-42_11 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Matsusaka, John G, 1993. "Election Closeness and Voter Turnout: Evidence from California Ballot Propositions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 76(4), pages 313-334, August.
    11. repec:cup:apsrev:v:102:y:2008:i:01:p:33-48_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Thomas Palfrey & Howard Rosenthal, 1983. "A strategic calculus of voting," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 7-53, January.
    13. repec:cup:apsrev:v:68:y:1974:i:02:p:525-536_11 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Alan Gerber & Donald Green & Ron Shachar, 2003. "Voting may be habit forming: Evidence from a randomized field experiment," Natural Field Experiments 00251, The Field Experiments Website.
    15. Blais, Andre & Young, Robert, 1999. "Why Do People Vote? An Experiment in Rationality," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 99(1-2), pages 39-55, April.
    16. Green, Donald P. & Shachar, Ron, 2000. "Habit Formation and Political Behaviour: Evidence of Consuetude in Voter Turnout," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 30(04), pages 561-573, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Coleman, Stephen, 2010. "The spatial diffusion of social conformity: the case of voting participation," MPRA Paper 23057, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    turnout; social networks; adaptative behavior;

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ehu:ikerla:6417. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alcira Macías Redondo). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/f1ehues.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.