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Who's Favored by Evaluative Voting? An Experiment Conducted During the 2012 French Presidential Election

  • Antoinette Baujard

    (GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - École Normale Supérieure - Lyon)

  • Frédéric Gavrel

    (CREM - Centre de Recherche en Economie et Management - CNRS : UMR6211 - Université de Rennes 1 - Université de Caen Basse-Normandie)

  • Herrade Igersheim

    (BETA - Bureau d'économie théorique et appliquée - CNRS : UMR7522 - Université de Strasbourg - Université Nancy II)

  • Jean-François Laslier

    (PREG - Pole de recherche en économie et gestion - CNRS : UMR7176 - Polytechnique - X)

  • Isabelle Lebon

    (CREM - Centre de Recherche en Economie et Management - CNRS : UMR6211 - Université de Rennes 1 - Université de Caen Basse-Normandie)

Under evaluative voting, the voter freely grades each candidate on a numerical scale, with the winning candidate being determined by the sum of the grades they receive. This paper compares evaluative voting with the two-round system, reporting on an experiment which used various evaluation scales, conducted during the first round of the 2012 French presidential election. Invitations to participate in the study were extended to around 5,000 voters in three cities, and the experiment attracted 2,340 participants. Basing our argument on the ranks, relative scores, and grade profiles of candidates, we show that the two-round system favors "exclusive" candidates, that is candidates who elicit strong feelings, while evaluative rules favor "inclusive" candidates, that is candidates who attract the support of a large span of the electorate. These differences are explained by two complementary reasons: the opportunity for the voter to support several candidates under evaluative voting rules, and the specific pattern of strategic voting under the official, two-round voting rule.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Working Papers with number hal-00803024.

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Date of creation: 20 Mar 2013
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Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-00803024
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  1. Antoinette Baujard & Herrade Igersheim, 2007. "Expérimentation du vote par note et du vote par approbation lors de l'élection présidentielle française du 22 avril 2007," Post-Print halshs-00337290, HAL.
  2. Antoinette Baujard & Frédéric Gavrel & Herrade Igersheim & Jean-François Laslier & Isabelle Lebon, 2013. "Who’s Favored by Evaluative Voting ? An Experiment Conducted During the 2012 French Presidential Election," Working Papers of BETA 2013-08, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  3. Claude Hillinger, 2005. "The Case for Utilitarian Voting," Homo Oeconomicus, Institute of SocioEconomics, vol. 23, pages 295-321.
  4. Brams, S.J. & Fishburn, P.C., 2003. "Going from Theory to Practice: The Mixed Success of Approval Voting," Working Papers 03-06, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  5. Karine Van der Straeten & Jean-François Laslier & Nicolas Sauger & André Blais, 2010. "Strategic, sincere, and heuristic voting under four election rules: an experimental study," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 435-472, September.
  6. Matías Núñez & Jean Laslier, 2014. "Preference intensity representation: strategic overstating in large elections," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 313-340, February.
  7. Antoinette Baujard & Frédéric Gavrel & Herrade Igersheim & Jean-François Laslier & Isabelle Lebon, 2013. "Vote par approbation, vote par note. Une expérimentation lors de l'élection présidentielle du 22 avril 2012," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 64(2), pages 345-356.
  8. Gaertner, Wulf & Xu, Yongsheng, 2012. "A general scoring rule," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 193-196.
  9. Dellis, Arnaud, 2009. "Would letting people vote for multiple candidates yield policy moderation?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(2), pages 772-801, March.
  10. Antoinette BAUJARD & Herrade IGERSHEIM & Thomas SENNE, 2011. "The Political Supply in the 2007 French Presidential Elections : An Analysis Based on Experimental Data," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 101-102, pages 149-186.
  11. Hillinger, Claude, 2004. "On the Possibility of Democracy and Rational Collective Choice," Discussion Papers in Economics 429, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  12. Hillinger, Claude, 2004. "Voting and the Cardinal Aggregation of Judgments," Discussion Papers in Economics 353, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
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