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Determinants of Direct Democracy

Author

Listed:
  • Nadia Fiorino
  • Roberto Ricciuti

    ()

Abstract

This paper investigates on the demographic, economic, political and cultural determinants of direct democracy in 87 countries using an index of direct democracy. The test is interesting since there are important variations across these countries in the referendum and initiative use. We apply a number of estimation techniques. We find that per capita income, education and a larger share of Catholic population are positive determinants, whereas ethnic fractionalization is depending on the estimation technique. Political rights and stability also work as prerequisites to direct democracy. Direct democracy seems independent from the institutional structure.

Suggested Citation

  • Nadia Fiorino & Roberto Ricciuti, 2007. "Determinants of Direct Democracy," ICER Working Papers 23-2007, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:23-2007
    as

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    File URL: http://www.biblioecon.unito.it/biblioservizi/RePEc/icr/wp2007/ICERwp23-07.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Edward Glaeser & Giacomo Ponzetto & Andrei Shleifer, 2007. "Why does democracy need education?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 77-99, June.
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    4. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-279, April.
    5. Feld, Lars P. & Matsusaka, John G., 2003. "Budget referendums and government spending: evidence from Swiss cantons," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2703-2724, December.
    6. Blomberg, S. Brock & Hess, Gregory D. & Weerapana, Akila, 2004. "The impact of voter initiatives on economic activity," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 207-226, March.
    7. Matsusaka, John G & McCarty, Nolan M, 2001. "Political Resource Allocation: Benefits and Costs of Voter Initiatives," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 413-448, October.
    8. Frey, Bruno S & Kucher, Marcel & Stutzer, Alois, 2001. "Outcome, Process and Power in Direct Democracy: New Econometric Results," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 107(3-4), pages 271-293, June.
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    14. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 587-623, June.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    direct democracy; comparative politics; referendum;

    JEL classification:

    • H80 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - General

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