IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Two-ballot versus plurality rule: an empirical investigation on the number of candidates

Listed author(s):
  • Carlos Eduardo S. Gonçalves


    (Universidade de São Paulo)

  • Ricardo A. Madeira


    (Universidade de São Paulo)

  • Mauro Rodrigues


    (Universidade de São Paulo)

Duverger claimed more than 50 years ago that the number of candidates in elections should be a function of electoral rules. Both his “law” and “hypothesis” suggest the number of candidates vying for seats in elections to be tightly linked to characteristics of the electoral process such as its degree of proportionality and the presence of runoffs. Here we test the validity of Duverger’s claim using data from municipal elections in Brazil. Our study differs from others in the field in two important dimensions. First, by using municipal data we avoid the usual problems that plague statistical analysis using cross-country data. Secondly, we have a truly exogenous source of variation due to a change in electoral legislation introduced by the constitutional reform of 1988: simple plurality remained the rule only in municipalities with less than 200,000 voters, and a second-ballot became mandatory for the others above that threshold. This allows for a neat identification strategy using panel data. Our main finding is that elections with runoffs lure greater numbers of candidates in municipalities with sufficiently high levels of heterogeneity.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Universidade Federal do Paraná, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0112.

in new window

Length: 16 pages
Date of creation: 2011
Handle: RePEc:fup:wpaper:0112
Note: Creation Date corresponds to the year in which the paper was published on the Department of Economics website. The paper may have been written a small number of months before its publication date.
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Av. Prefeito Lothário Meissner, 632 - térreo, Bairro Jardim Botânico, 80210-170 Curitiba - PR

Phone: (041)360-4350
Fax: (041)360-4471
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fup:wpaper:0112. 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: (Luciano Nakabashi)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.